Launched in 2003, LinkedIn has more than 370 million members worldwide and 200,000 here in Cambodia, making it the world’s largest professional network. When you send a CV to an employer in Cambodia, you can be sure that managers will search for you on LinkedIn. Management Insider teaches you how to make the most of LinkedIn by building a profile to impress.
Forging a career in today’s competitive world means you have to make the most of every opportunity to build your network and promote yourself. Having a presence on LinkedIn is a key part of this, but it’s of limited value if your profile doesn’t stand out from the crowd.
A LinkedIn profile is an opportunity to sell yourself to potential employers and influencers in your trade or profession. You should list every skill, achievement and experience that demonstrates your value. Using appropriate keywords helps people to find you easily when searching on LinkedIn, and the content of your profile should be appealing enough to make them contact you.
The following tips will ensure your LinkedIn profile is optimised for success
Include an Appropriate Photograph
LinkedIn users are 10 times more likely to contact you if you include a photograph. For some reason, some people leave this section of their profile blank. The photograph should be of you dressed for business: If you are a graphic designer, be creative; if you work in finance, stay sharp and simple. There’s a big difference between LinkedIn and social networks like Facebook, and your profile picture shouldn’t be a shot of you relaxing at the beach with friends.
Include Your Professional Memberships
Listing memberships of professional groups will give people confidence that you take your career seriously and have an interest in what you do. Other professionals are more likely to form a positive impression of you if you belong to similar groups and organisations. If you hold a position in a professional body, such as being a regional secretary, this can further improve your personal brand.
Make the Most of Your Skills List
It’s important that you list all your skills on LinkedIn. This is your opportunity to show potential employers what a broad range of skills and expertise you can offer, so don’t hold back. Make a list of eight to ten core skills, and include about five more that you are developing or have used in the past. Not all the skills you list have to be relevant to your profession or current role. For example, a legal professional could add value to his LinkedIn profile by listing research, social media marketing and auditing skills, if he has experience in these areas. Endorse people for skills that you know they possess, and watch the endorsements come back to you.
Join Relevant LinkedIn Groups
LinkedIn groups are networks of members with similar interests, occupations and issues. Joining and participating in groups is great for networking. You can join discussions and answer questions raised by other LinkedIn members in groups, and this can build your reputation as an expert in your field or profession. If you don’t have the knowledge or time to write your own articles and posts in groups, you can share content from blogs and other sources outside LinkedIn.
Get Recommendations From Other Members
One of the most effective ways to make your LinkedIn profile stand out from the crowd is to display recommendations from clients, employers and colleagues. You can explain in your profile all the great things you have to offer, but it’s much more powerful if other people do this for you. LinkedIn allows you to approach your contacts to request they write recommendations for you, and the process is very simple. It’s a good idea to add a personal note to requests for recommendations, and this allows you to influence what’s said. For example, your request could ask a previous manager how they rated your ability to solve problems and come up with new ideas.
Open the door, let LinkedIn in and optimise your profile. Before you know it, LinkedIn will be opening doors for you.