Tips for Using Linked In

Linked In is a great tool for building, supporting and maintaining a network.  It doesn’t take a ton of time, but it does take a little bit of know how.  Consider these tips when developing your Linked In habits this summer.

  • Send a Linked In request to anyone you meet in a professional setting.  Use Linked In to follow-up with the people you meet at events or through mutual connections.  Send requests in a timely manner– don’t wait a week after meeting someone. By sending the request promptly, you are still fresh in their memory.
  • Reach out and invite the people you know.  Include a note in your request to personalize the outreach.  If it is someone you don’t know well, spur their memory of how you met in your note. Chances are they remember you and would be happy to connect with you.
  • Accept invitations only from people you know.  The goal isn’t to have 1000 connections that you kinda, sorta know.  Connect with people who you want to include in your network in a meaningful way.
  • Complete your profile accurately. Treat it as an online bio which contains key information about you and your abilities. It will make a difference if someone is deciding to hire you, do business with you, or make referrals to you.
  • Don’t be shy…request introductions via your connections to build your network. Is there someone at a company you would like to meet? Search the person or company on LinkedIn and see if any of your connections are also connected to this person.

Perhaps the most important thing to remember about Linked In is that at all times…be professional. LinkedIn is a business network which directly reflects the type of person you are to the world. You can’t take anything back, so think before you type.  Don’t clutter your Linked In profile with mindless status updates or casual images.  When used properly, Linked In is a very powerful tool for building a network.