Or, how to use Linkedin to help land a job after graduation
Today is your day. Your mountain is waiting…..yadda, yadda, yadda. You’ve heard that a lot no doubt, either preceded or followed by, “So what are you going to do for a job?”
If the answer isn’t, “grad school,” then you’re already way behind. Jobs are won in the months leading up to graduation, not the months after.
Oh wait, I’m the first to tell you that? Well, at least you have a bitchin’ Linkedin profile working for you while you sleep, right?
Ok, we’re in full-fledged scramble mode. This is DefCon 1, and we’ve got to…..wait, what are you doing? Taking Instagram photos?!
Listen, I realize for the past 4 to 5 years you’ve communicated by text, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, but in the dreaded, “real world” we still use email. Some still use the telephone. Fewer still use the United State Postal Service.
But there is hope. It’s the perfect bridge between what you know and love and what your next hiring manager is comfortable with: Linkedin.
First, Linkedin was founded in 2002, and launched somewhere around May, 2003. The Founder knew a little something about the online world at the time because he was an early Internet entrepreneur and in on the ground floor at PayPal. Maybe you remember them?
Next, Linkedin is not Facebook with ties as some folks may have told you. It’s a professional networking site with a lot of the same characteristics as the social media platforms you’ve grown up with in your adolescent and early adult years. In other words, you’ve got to do more than post pictures and “Like” all those eCards that fill your newsfeed.
Lastly, there are no silver bullets which will slay the hairy unemployment beast. It’s going to take a mix of old school elbow grease and new media smarts to win a J-O-B.
But, you’re busy! You’ve got things to do! You’ve got to move out of your college town apartment or dorm and go to all those weddings and do drinks with your friends you may not see again for years (if ever) and oh yeah, there needs to be a beach trip squeezed in somewhere because let’s face it, you earned it when you crossed that stage and shook hands with what’s his name who may or may not have been the President of your University.
Fine. Then I’ll give you my best advice as a hiring manager, boss and purveyor of young, coachable talent in terms you can easily understand so you can spend less than two hours getting your Linkedin profile working for you while you go do that other stuff. I’ll share it Twitter style.
Linkedin ≠ Facebook. Lose the group photos, you and your bestie, and stick to professional head shots only
Write a web friendly bio: 3 paragraphs max, third person is okay and use keywords that stick with your desired profession
Previous positions: Include results of what you did as an Intern or part-time job in college. Job description is fine, results are better
Stop using #hashtags on #every #damn #word of your #updates. You look like an attention starved middle-schooler. Those don’t get hired.
No one cares where you went to High School unless it is Institut Le Rosey. Right now, focus on networking up, not down
Write recommendations for others first. No one likes getting a generic request from someone they haven’t heard from in years
There is no prize for most connections. Start with folks you know in your desired industry or companies
Join your Alumni group(s) on Linkedin, including Fraternal. Don’t be afraid to post what you’re looking for and where
Unlock your Twitter and selectively share updates with both Linkedin and Twitter. If you’re twitter is locked, stick to text messaging
Do not share negative news, views and personal trials. Leave that stuff on Vague-book
Find some recruiters who scout for your industry. Write them a personal note requesting a connection and why
Check your privacy settings. They’re easier than most social networks, but still just as important to manage
And there are more – lots more, but that’s my advice on where to start. Feel free to drop your own Twitter length advice in the comments below! Or you can even tweet them directly to me, @DonCrow
Author: Don Crow is Founder & CEO at Verge Pipe Media. Verge Pipe Media
assists public institutions, enterprises and the non-profit sector with Imaginative
Inbound Marketing strategies + campaigns. We also have a development team
chock full of Marvelous Mobile Migrators, poised to help transition our clients into a
mobile + social world with custom software, iOS and Android mobile apps.