So much social networking; so little time. Are you a Facebook person or a LinkedIn person? I love LinkedIn. I spend time everyday updating contacts, participating in discussions, and just looking around. As a result, I have almost 1000 contacts. I know people who have more contacts than that! You might think I spend hours but actually I spend about 15 minutes a day messing around with LinkedIn.
I use Linkedin for many purposes. My main goal is to make connections that encourage people to work with The Interview Doctor. The more people I talk to, the more opportunities for people to think of me when they need help with their job search, resume, or networking. My secondary goal is to find people I knew in the past either at one of my many jobs or at school. It makes me feel good. I feel connected with my roots in Chicago.
I also have a Facebook account. I have about 100 contacts there. I follow a few people who obviously spend hours on Facebook, or so it seems to me. I have a new understanding of Kris and Michelle, for example. I know so much more about Kris’s love of anything Ohio State. I know more than I want to know about Michelle’s politics but I was thrilled that she was thrilled about meeting Herman Cain. I share Louie’s political views and read eagerly her interesting posts about our shared interests. I connect with people at church and at the boat club. I do not talk business with those folks because we have other things in common. So Facebook is a natural place to meet outside of the business world.
I don’t post much on Facebook. I go through spurts where I gush about my daughter or a trip with Kermit. I post pictures too. But I don’t LOVE Facebook the way I LOVE LinkedIn. There is only so much time in the day for social networking so I pick one over the other.
However when you are in a job search, you need to use any means possible to expand your network to increase your chances of getting that critical link to a new opportunity.
Everyone changing jobs should have a LinkedIn account. Make sure your profile reflects your resume and highlights your personal marketing plan – what you want and what you bring to the table. That way when you add contacts and they look at your profile, they know who you are and what you want.
Set goals to increase your LinkedIn contacts. New to LinkedIn? Set a goal to have 100 contacts in two weeks. Have 200 contacts? Set a goal to get to 300 in a month. Go through your current and old telephone listings or personal contact lists and look up those people on LinkedIn. Chances are they will be there and you can connect with them.
If you are a Facebook person, use Facebook in addition to LinkedIn. Make sure your Facebook friends know you are seeking a job. Write about your job search experiences and ask your friends when they can help.
By sharing your interests and needs, more people can help you, increasing the likelihood you will learn about opportunities you might otherwise miss.