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How to Network, Find a Job and Build Relationships on LinkedIn

If you want to find a job, LinkedIn is the go-to social network where you can network, build relationships, and trawl its vibrant job board. The largest brand-name companies and recruiters regularly post jobs on LinkedIn. They will find you if you don’t find them first.

A Primer for Your Job Search

LinkedIn really works. Major national companies identified two of my friends through a key word search. My friends weren’t even looking but they accepted the better-paying, more important jobs. But you won’t be found if your Profile isn’t up-to-date. And not including a photo is sure to be a turn-off.

A friend who is in transition belongs to a support group of other high-powered corporate executives. She asked me to speak to them about how to most effectively use LinkedIn to source opportunities.

Like the other major social media networks, LinkedIn keeps adding new features, refining existing ones and dropping others. For example, LinkedIn has a smart-phone app, that will send you push notifications when relevant jobs go live and the power to apply on your phone with your LinkedIn Profile.

I had already developed a presentation about job hunting on LinkedIn, my primary social network, and even I was surprised at the number of changes in the past two years, which I incorporated into this updated version. So if you are in the job market, or a friend of yours is, you should find this presentation helpful. Good luck in landing your ideal job!

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  1. Absolutely, Jeannette. Thanks for adding our group to your presentation.

    Headhunters actually find me on a continuous basis.

    As for networking and building relationships on Linkedin; Pat, Sherryl, you and I are a great example of that. After 4-5 years of building up relationships with each other we now jointly manage a group and get together on Google Hangouts. A real success story.

    • Catarina — I couldn’t agree more. It’s been a total delight getting to know you and the others in our Group to share ideas, exchange posts and help each other out.

  2. It’s easy to let your profile slide if you aren’t in the looking mode, so this is a great reminder to keep it up to date. And also a great reminder to check into the LI updates to see how they can best benefit you. I enjoyed the slide presentation!

    • Thanks, Jacquie. There is so much new happening on the social media networks it’s hard to keep up. I try to help!

  3. Great presentation Jeannette, and as Catarina said, thanks so much for adding BHB. I’m not in the job market myself, but your pointers are excellent, and tick all the boxes. I especially liked your mention of giving and becoming a resource. Excellent advice – and of course everything that you do yourself:-)

    • A.K. — as I mentioned in the presentation you need to give in order to get. Those who are not in the job market may be someday and now is the time to build those all-important relationships.

  4. Although I am not currently job hunting, I could not agree with you more that LinkedIn is a great place to build relationships. It has helped me find quite a number of influential business leaders within the music and publishing industries. If I start to look for a job in the future, LinkedIn has certainly helped me position myself correctly.

    • Edward — you’re doing the exact right thing. Making important connections now in your industry. You never know when those connections may be helpful in the future.

  5. Love this presentation you have on Slideshare Jeannette. I wonder why when I search for introvert, I’m on the first page but last AND when I search on introverts (plural) I come up #2. Yeah, I expected Susan Cain to be #1 and she was under introverts.

    I’m not a LION. Are you?

    Thanks for sharing THIS one!

    • Pat — I’m not a LION. I get so many invitations from people — with the default invitation — who bear no relationship to what I do. I can’t help my friends by introducing them to people I don’t know!

  6. Great presentation on LinkedIn. I’ve been on LinkedIn for years, but know I haven’t used it as effectively as I might.

    • Donna — thanks. Well, based on the topics you write about it may not be the right social media network for you. We all have to pick what works for us.

  7. Jeannette, I’m not in the job market as you know but I do feel the connections I made on LinkedIn, especially BHB, are invaluable in life in general. I really liked your example of a LinkedIn invitation to connect. I have been getting better at it but certainly not as good as that. Will have to keep it in mind next time I meet someone interesting on the site. Thanks for the presentation.

    • Lenie — the default invitation really gets under my skin. The sender gives you no reason to connect. That’s why unless I know the person well, I don’t accept them.

  8. Jeannette, I really enjoyed the slideshow: well done! I do have LION tendencies – if I see even a little connection, I say yes because I feel like I *might* like to know the person. I often have recruiters contact me, but since I’m not looking for full-time, they usually don’t have a good fit. I find it much easier to connect in groups like Bloggers Helping Bloggers than in some others. In tech groups, people can get, oh, just a wee bit snootie. But I do get lots of good tech information in those groups.

    • Leora — Thanks. Glad you enjoyed it. I find that Groups — in particular the BHB Group — have worked well for me. Not only making connections but making friends, too.

  9. Hi Jeannette,

    I’m glad that you included the slide about LIONs (LinkedIn Open Networkers). Honestly, when I see LION on a profile, I’m more hesitant to connect with them. My concern is that they’re not discriminating about who they connect with and that connecting with them would potentially expose me to more spammers. That concern may be unfounded but it’s a belief that I hold.

    Your suggestion to always customize your invitations is spot-on. Doing that helps you to stand out in the mind of the person that you’re connecting with.

    As usual, this slide presentation is worth sharing. I’m passing it on.

    • Thanks for sharing, Sherryl. One reason I’m not a LION is that I can’t help people who will look at my connections and ask for an introduction. I can’t do that if I don’t know my 1st connections.

  10. You did a nice job of this presentation and the information is very thorough. One note on slide 9 about accepting connection requests on LindedIn from people you don’t know. While LinkedIn doesn’t have all the phonies and stalkers that you find on other social networks, there are some fake accounts which usually are set up for the purpose of scraping data from users’ profiles. I’ve had a couple of these. If I see a request from someone I don’t know I usually use the picture to do an image search on Google. As a example I got a request and did an image search on one that came in a couple months ago and found that the image was used for several different names online so I knew it wasn’t real.

  11. I love LinkedIn and enjoyed your presentation. Of late, my last few speaking engagements have been on this very topic! Thanks for sharing with us.

    • Laurie — how interesting. Two great minds and all that. When I updated this presentation which I only developed a couple of years ago I was surprised at all the changes. They sort of sneak up on you.

  12. Hi Jeannette, your presentation on using LinkedIn to build relationships and find jobs is great. While I’m not looking, I have friends who currently are and will make sure to pass this along to them. LI can be a very valuable resource. The new smart phone app sounds really helpful.

    • Susan — glad that my presentation will be helpful to your friends. With the number of changes on LinkedIn in the past two years, I got updated on developments, too, as I wrote it.

  13. I have a good government job, so for me networking is not about future positions. I have found that Linkedin is wonderful for me to find others with a similar position. I have used Linkedin so much in terms of sharing information. Many times a situation arises, that one of my contacts has dealt with it before, that knowledge is indispensable to me.

    • William — that’s what social networks are for — developing relationships and sharing information. I’ve found LinkedIn to be especially helpful in that regard, much more so than other social media networks.

  14. LinkedIn is a great tool. It’s not only good for getting new positions though. It is also a great place to find clients or customers and for them to find you.

    • Beth — we often discuss LinkedIn as a way to proactively make new connections and potential clients. But it works two ways. People can also find you.

  15. LinkedIn is a great source for me and a great platform. If I were looking for employment your guide would be a God send. Really well done and professional Jeannette. In terms of BHB I know of no other group on LinkedIn that comes close to the relationship builder that this has proven to be.

    • Tim — Thanks so much. I agree about LinkedIn. I feel I’ve built some wonderful relationships, particularly within the BHB Group. I’ve also developed a niche in writing LinkedIn profiles so it’s been helpful to my business, too.

  16. It’s true that LinkedIn is great for job searches (great cartoon by the way) but it is also an excellent for finding and being found by your ideal client or customer. I use it more and more.

    • Beth — I couldn’t resist the cartoon. A lot of people still think of LinkedIn as mainly a job board and it certainly is good for that. But I, too, have developed many meaningful relationships on LinkedIn and some have led to business — interestingly enough, a niche writing LinkedIn Profiles!