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How to get a job with LinkedIn

Two top social media gurus, LinkedIn CEO Jeff Weiner and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg chatting at the Allen & Company Sun Valley Conference on July 7, 2011.
Two top social media gurus, LinkedIn CEO Jeff Weiner and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg chatting at the Allen & Company Sun Valley Conference on July 7, 2011.
Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images

It has always been important to create a favorable profile and develop a large network of connections on LinkedIn but “they should be considered the first steps,“ says Mike Lang on Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) in a post this week. Lang describes what more you should be doing to build a positive presence on LinkedIn. Read more to learn with whom you should be linking, how to find them and how to get introduced to them.
Build a reputation
LinkedIn was launched in 2003 as a business-oriented social networking service. It has taken a decade, but job seekers and employers are now beginning to use the site in ways originally intended. Posting a resume and waiting for calls is not enough in today’s world. As LinkedIn users network, they are building a reputation and becoming known to others as competent professionals. Mike Lang offers six tips on how become recognized. This writer added two more essential tips to help your job search.
Comment
Go to your home page, read the news and comments from others. Selecting “like” for an article is not enough. Make a good impression with insightful comments. People see these conversations and become aware of your knowledge, qualifications and background.
Post
Share articles you encounter on other sites. Your peers may also have the same interests and identify with you as a person. Always comment on the article. Consider it a lost opportunity to impress others with your personal insight and opinion.
Don’t Hide
Some social networking sites are fraught with dumb posts because they lack the ability to segment by interests. LinkedIn has established itself as a serious business-oriented social networking service. There is little risk of overexposure on LinkedIn if you choose your groups and connect with items that will interest your peers. Mike suggests the easiest way to advertise yourself is to update your resume.
Grow
“Add new connections whenever possible,” says Mike. “You don’t have to connect with everybody who sends you a request or everybody you meet, but connect with people who can help you.” Especially valuable contacts are hiring managers at companies that hire people like you, says Louise Fletcher, of BlueSkyResumes.com. She encourages job seekers to find them on LinkedIn filtering for industry, location and company size.
Join groups
Choose interest groups on LinkedIn where you will find your peers. Then grow your network by participating in those groups.
Communicate
The underappreciated power of LinkedIn is email access. LinkedIn reaches out and provides connections beyond your own sphere of friends. As you establish new connections, find ways to talk to them even if it is only checking in with them to see how they are doing.
Get introduced
“The best way to contact a hiring manager via LinkedIn is through an introduction,” says Joshua Waldman at Dummies.com. “Never, ever, ever invite a hiring manager to connect with your network as your first communication,” says Waldman. LinkedIn allows you to search its database, open managers’ profiles and click on the drop-down triangle next to “Connect.” Select “Get Introduced” to see your contacts who could introduce you. Do not treat introduction casually. Waldman encourages you to call the introducer to explain why you are making this request, how you plan to follow up and to give the introducer a chance to answer any questions about yourself and your intentions.
Finally, check that “digital dirt” does not torpedo your job application
As you build your visibility and reputation on LinkedIn, “make sure your online persona is free of digital dirt,” says a CareerBuilder report. CareerBuilder found that employers could uncover information about you that may hurt your chances. In a survey published October 2013, CareerBuilder found employers research candidates on Google and other search engines (48 percent), Facebook (44 percent), Twitter (27 percent), and even look at applicants’ comments offered on Yelp.com, Glassdoor.com or other rating sites (23 percent).