Written by Jim McBride
Ted Robison – LinkedIn Expert and Career Coach
LinkedIn is perhaps the most vital and valuable tool for people in career transition. To build your personal brand, to expand your professional network, to raise your visibility and be found: Get LinkedIn or Get Left Out, according to career coach and featured speaker Ted Robison.
LinkedIn is not just another social media platform. It’s not just an electronic version of your resume. LinkedIn is the showcase for your individual brand of transferable skills, expertise, personal style and the outstanding value you’ll bring to your next employer.
Many recruiters and hiring managers use LinkedIn exclusively to find and research candidates. There are over 600,000 LinkedIn subscribers worldwide. An astounding 87% of people find jobs through networking. A robust LinkedIn profile and a personal network of past and present colleagues, friends, alumni, industry insiders, recruiters and managers can be your gateway to landing your next great job opportunity.
On your LinkedIn profile, the headline and summary areas are your first impressions, so really make them count. Create a “wow factor” with your skills, experience and industry expertise. The goal is to differentiate your profile and compel the reader with a value proposition around your personal brand. Make statements about what you will bring to a hiring company. Develop a tagline, reveal your passion and let your personal style shine. Speak to the reader.
Make sure to include industry key words, which will help with search optimization when recruiters and managers are hunting on LinkedIn. If you’re in career transition and unsure how to fill the “current role” field, Ted suggests that you indicate you’re volunteering or consulting (as applicable).
Ted said that 80% of all available jobs are hidden from job boards. Meaning, those jobs aren’t made public and it takes networking to get you noticed and talking to those companies. Networking by definition means a supportive system of sharing information between people. LinkedIn can help you get the sharing started.
When your profile is complete, begin reaching out to your network contacts. Take someone to lunch. Meet for coffee. Have conversations. Ask how you can help them, and they will likely reciprocate. Your network connections can help you “break in” to companies on your target list, bypass recruiters and find the hidden jobs.
When preparing for interviews and business meetings, utilize LinkedIn to gather intel on the hiring manager and/or recruiter. Finding commonality with an interviewer allows you to build rapport, relax and demonstrate your preparedness.
Here’s a quick list of fundamentals for anybody just getting started on the LinkedIn platform or is perhaps already using LinkedIn and looking to create a more engaging profile.
• A professional headshot/background photo for your profile is a must
• Grow your professional network to at least 500 connections
• Obtain 4 – 8 recommendations from former managers, direct reports, peers
• Follow 30 – 50 target companies
• Join 30 – 50 groups and associations
• Comment in group discussions to show off your subject matter expertise
• Customize the default contact URL so it reflects your name. Put it on your business card
• LinkedIn is free. Try the free one-month Premium Account, if interested
• Privacy – limit the amount of personal information, it’s a business forum
If you’re having trouble getting started or just want to freshen up your profile, start looking at other people’s profiles to spark ideas. Encourage friends, family members, people in your network to give you feedback on your profile. You can make edits and tweaks as often as you’d like. Do whatever it takes to build and promote your brand…so you’re LinkedIn…not left out!
Mission – Through the goodwill of others, Goodwill of Central and Northern Arizona creates the pathway to a better future for all by helping those who desire self-sufficiency.
The Goodwill Career Centers offer free career coaching, assistance with resumes, mock interviewing, employment support and digital skills training. They specialize in providing on-going support for the professional job seeker. Goodwill delivers community awareness through onsite career centers as well as through the recent launch of mycareeradvisor.com. The services are free of charge and available to all.
Willis Towers Watson is a leading global advisory and solutions company that helps clients around the world turn risk into a path for growth. With roots dating back to 1828, Willis Towers Watson has 45,000 employees serving more than 140 countries and markets. The benefits Delivery & Administration Segment helps clients unlock their benefits strategy – by offering the highest quality administration in the industry and enabling their people to have a personalized benefits portfolio tailored to their needs. To keep updated on current job openings, go here.
Human Resources Generalist
Associate Director – Client Services Management
Account Executive – Health & Benefits
Team Leader – Benefit Outsourcing Sales
Online Training Development Specialist
LMS Administrator (Learning Management System)
User Experience Engineer
Mission – The State Farm mission is to help people manage the risks of everyday life, recover from the unexpected, and realize their dreams.
State Farm is currently hiring to fill customer service positions for their Marina Heights facility in Tempe. Patience, empathy and nurturing skills are desired to dial-in on customer emotions with a delight-to-serve approach. You can always find a current list of open positions on the State Farm site .
Accounting, Financial and Banking
Facilities Management and Administrative Services
Legal, Compliance and Risk Management
Marketing, Design and Communications
Research and Analytics
Technology and User Experience
Underwriting and Actuarial
Resources and Closing
Jessica Pierce closed the meeting by encouraging participants to make full use of the resources and partner volunteers. Stay tuned for weekly email updates.