Getting in the door: Using LinkedIn

 Business professionals, job seekers, and my own resumes clients respond differently when I ask if they are using LinkedIn.

  1. “What’s That?” Some never heard of LinkedIn at all. There was a time when I hadn’t either. We all have to start some place.
  2. “I’m up there but nothing’s happening.” Incomplete profile. Typed in their name and where they worked but nothing more. Visualize yourself as an invisible person in the midst of a crowd.
  3. “I’m up there but I don’t know who to connect with.” Put their profile up and did a reasonably good job creating an interesting profile but then they left it alone. Visualize yourself as standing in a room full of people but not talking or engaging with any of them.
  4. “I’m up there and connected but I don’t know what to do with it.” They’ve done their homework, written a good profile, connected with 60 to 100 people or more, but then left it alone.
  5. “I don’t want to be up there, I’m not looking for a job.” Confused about the way the tool is being used, they shy away from it.
  6. “I don’t have any recommendations.” Again, fear makes them miss one of the most powerful components of this networking tool. Giving and receiving recommendations  is another key to using LinkedIn effectively.

LinkedIn is a professional network but not one limited to job seekers.I see LinkedIn as a lifelong tool for business professionals as well as job seekers. I’ve talked about LinkedIn before.

To use LinkedIn effectively for the life of your career, you need to:

  1. Create a profile that is as filled with keywords and accomplishments as your professionally written resume and yet does not look like a clone of your resume.
  2. Connect with people in your network and beyond. As you start using LinkedIn, more people will come to mind as you see the suggestion LinkedIn provides for you and as you see your connections connect with others you may have forgotten.
  3. Give and ask for recommendations. Giving recommendations is always a good idea. Giving is always a good idea. People like getting recommendations.
  4. Use the powerful search engine in LinkedIn to find connections for informational interviews. After you have landed an interview, use LinkedIn to review profiles of people who are interviewing you to help you understand them and the company better.

If you need someone to help you getting your profile written for LinkedIn or better ways to use it, most of my packages include not only my services writing your profile and coaching you on how to use it and Jason Alba’s LinkedIn for Jobseekers DVD.


  1. C. Haefner on April 13, 2010 at 8:05 am

    Great analogy Julie! Thanks for breaking LinkedIn down in to smaller, easier to process pieces.

    • Julie Walraven on April 13, 2010 at 12:19 pm

      You’re welcome Chuck! Hope all is going well for you. Let me know if there is anything I can help you with.

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Julie Walraven

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