Thursday, October 31, 2013

6 Ways to Grow Your LinkedIn Connections


Are you looking to grow your LinkedIn network?
Do you want to improve your chances of connecting with people via LinkedIn?

In this article, you’ll find six tips for successful networking that will help you avoid common mistakes that can damage your professional reputation on LinkedIn.

What’s Different About LinkedIn?

Unlike social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter that accommodate both personal and business uses, LinkedIn is a social network built strictly for business.

From the appearance of your profile to how you manage relationships, the people on LinkedIn expect professional behavior from you at all times.

As you build your network, it’s important to know what’s appropriate and what’s considered bad LinkedIn etiquette.

Here are six tips:

#1: Show People Your Business Side

You only get one chance to make a first impression, so make it count. If you use an unprofessional image for your profile photo, you may never get a chance to recover your reputation.

Your LinkedIn profile image should show you in your best professional light. Use a head shot with a clean background, a smile and a clear view of your eyes. Think of how you would present yourself at an event thronging with prospects and use an image that does the same, online.

professional profile image
Always use an appropriate profile image.

#2: Skip the Keyword-Stuffing

The first thing many people do when they receive your connection request is look at your profile. And if your profile is stuffed with repetitive or irrelevant keywords, there’s a pretty good chance that they won’t connect with you.

too many keywords
Too many keywords make your profile look suspect.

Yes, you must optimize your LinkedIn profile with relevant keywords so you’re found in search results, but there is a big difference between keyword-optimizing and keyword-stuffing.

Instead of using a large number of vaguely relevant words to show up in hundreds of search results, choose three or four top keywords you want to be associated with to make sure you show up in search results when people are looking for exactly what you offer.

be selective with keywords
Be smart and selective with the keywords you use in your profile.

Ways 3-6 and the complete article

The 13 Dos And Don'ts Of Job Searching While You're Still Employed

Jacquelyn Smith

Ready for a new job? Most career experts would tell you to start looking while you’re still employed. But when you do—you must tread carefully.

“When you’re working, your professional network is working for you because you’re constantly interacting with your industry contacts,” says Andy Teach, a corporate veteran and author of From Graduation to Corporation: The Practical Guide to Climbing the Corporate Ladder One Rung at a Time. “They can inform you about jobs you may not be aware of. If you’re not working, you’re out of sight and out of mind.”

Sara Menke, the founder and chief executive of Premier, a boutique staffing firm in San Francisco, says having a job while looking for a job makes you that much more attractive to a potential employer. “Companies want to hire the best of the best and [those people] are usually employed,” she says. “Plus, quitting your job before having a job is a big risk that you should avoid. Most people do not have endless streams of income, so you should stay in your position until you get that firm offer for new employment.”

Teach agrees. He says most potential employers prefer candidates who currently have a job because it gives them more confidence that you’ll be a good hire. “If you don’t currently have a job, it raises a lot of questions and puts you in a defensive position, and you won’t be coming at them from a position of strength,” he says.

Furthermore, when you look for a job while you still have a job, there tends to be less pressure on you, he adds. “If you don’t get the new job, you have your current job to fall back on and you can just try again. Having a job gives you confidence because you’re not in a desperate situation. You may need a new job, you may want a new job, but you don’t have to have a new job, unlike someone who is out of work.”

Another reason to start looking while you’re still employed: Having a job while searching for new employment gives you leverage when it comes to negotiating terms for the new gig, Teach says. “You’re in a greater position to make demands and get what you want. Without a job, this leverage goes out the window.”

While the experts highly advise against quitting or waiting until you’re fired to start your job search—there are risks associated with job hunting while you’re still employed.

Perhaps the biggest danger of looking for a new job while you have one is that someone at your company will find out and tell others, Teach says. If your boss finds out, he or she may take it personally and see it as a lack of loyalty to them and the company. “They will assume that you’re unhappy and worst case scenario, may start taking steps to terminate you. Supervisors want employees who are committed to the job, not to a job search.”

Michael Kerr, an international business speaker, author and president of Humor at Work, agrees. He says the biggest danger is the optics and the fear of a backlash from your employer, who may view your job search as being “almost treasonous.” Depending on the maturity level of your immediate supervisor, “they may seek ways to punish your efforts, such as freezing you out of discussions and opportunities. And obviously, if the new job you are seeking is with a major competitor, then certainly ethical issues will arise and even legal issues around conflict of interest.  Depending on the job and environment, you may even be perceived as a security threat,” he says.

Another danger is that if you start to focus too much on getting a new job, you may not be giving your full attention to your current employer, says Teri Hockett, the chief executive of What’s For Work?, a career site for women. “You’ll not only be impacting your company, but your own professional credibility. You may no longer be considered for prime assignments and projects, and this can hurt you in a multitude of ways from your confidence level to your networking capabilities when you need them at an all-time high.”

So, to avoid these potential consequences and to ensure a successful job search while you’re still employed, here’s what you should and shouldn’t do:

Don’t tell anyone at work. 
“Do not share your search and impending departure information with the rumor mill,” Hockett says. Depending on your relationship with your boss, you may want to share information about your job search, but letting co-workers know can make it difficult for you to leave on a good note, especially if they are vying for your job.

Teach adds: “There’s an old World War II saying, ‘Loose lips sink ships.’ In your case, loose lips can jeopardize your current and prospective job.” If you tell one person at work that you’re looking for a new job, you might as well tell everyone. The exception to this would be if your boss has told you about upcoming layoffs and has offered to help you in your job search, he says.

Make sure your LinkedIn profile is 100% complete. 
With so many people on LinkedIn, having a complete profile these days won’t raise any suspicions, Teach says. “Perhaps the first place a hiring manager will look when they have a job candidate is at the job candidate’s LinkedIn profile. It’s best to keep it updated all the time so that you don’t have to rush to complete it when you start looking for a new job.” However, don’t indicate that you’re looking for new job opportunities on your profile, in case your current employer monitors your page.

Never bad-mouth your current employer.  
“Even if you are in a bad situation with a tyrannical Vader-like boss, it’s prudent to take the high road, demonstrate some class and ensure that you don’t burn any bridges,” Kerr says. Keep your conversations and your psyche focused on the positive benefits of moving forward, rather than the negative aspect of what you are trying to escape.

Let your prospective employer know that your job search should be kept confidential. Teach suggests that you inform them that you don’t want your current employer to know that you’re looking for a new job and would appreciate it if they told as few people as possible that you are interviewing.

Dos and Don'ts 5-13 and the complete Forbes article

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Five LinkedIn Strategies You Haven't Thought Of Before

Cheryl Conner

I have personally found LinkedIn’s best uses lie in the creative strategies practitioners have devised on their own, thus my recent favorite five tactics, to wit:

1. Scoping the Competition
This is the strategy my client accomplished last week. He had asked me the week prior, as he prepared for annual budget planning, if there was any way of assessing just how large his competitor’s marketing team and budget might be?

I opened LinkedIn and ran a search on the company’s name and any job titles that contained marketing or communications. Voila—the search produced an immediate list. As he began to peruse their titles, I suggested he temporarily change his privacy restrictions to make his views and searches anonymous. Within a few minutes of searching we were able to see how many results appeared for people currently employed in the company’s entire base and of those, how many are working in marketing. While not every employee is registered on LinkedIn, surely, he’d arrived at a reasonably close estimate of the percentage of the company’s employees who are working in marketing, which would equate at least somewhat to the level of the company’s percentage of revenue devoted to marketing efforts as well.

As may be expected, a search of employees both past and present was also helpful in illustrating a fairly significant level of churn. How long do employees typically stay at the company in question? With a bit more calculation, now we know. Some of the former marketing employees had gone into private consulting practices. Extra helpful. Subject to the confidentiality aspects of their prior employment, of course, the client knows which consultants might be especially beneficial in helping him scope out his own future competitive plans.

But my clever client showed me how he’d taken the results a step further: he’d created a simple Word document that outlined the competitive company’s full department, by job title. Next to it, he placed a column to illustrate the corresponding people and roles in his own team. The result was a picture worth more than a few thousand words. The difference was profound. He was able to inform his management team that he recognized it would not be possible to fill the resource chasm in the space of a year, but would strongly suggest the addition of four strategic new hires, and flipped his screen to show the comparison with the addition of the four new positions, in blue. He’d made his case with a single image, and indications are strong that his proposal will be entirely approved. A smart strategy.

2.  Job scoping/background checks
Yes, we fairly well all use LinkedIn to accomplish background checks, but consider the call I recently received from a regional tech company. It wasn’t a recruiter, but an internal executive who phoned.
“I need to make a PR hire that will really ‘wow’ our senior executives,” she said. “Of the resumes that have crossed my desk, I know that three of these individuals have prior connections to you. I’d like to hear your unvarnished reactions to each.”

Bear in mind that I knew nothing of the position she had opened prior to the call and that I hadn’t been listed as a reference for any of three prospects. In fact I’d never even worked at the same company as one of the three.  I gave her my feedbacks. In one of the cases, the individual had been a prior employee who had departed impulsively and badly. I might have shared that information, but I never got that far. As she heard a bit about the juvenile choices the individual had made here and there—the things a young employee thinks the boss doesn’t hear about or won’t matter—she replied, “Say no more. I wouldn’t touch this employee with a 100-foot pole. He won’t be getting a call.”

In a word: LinkedIn.

Strategies 3-5 and the complete Forbes article

35 Surefire Ways to Stand Out During Your Job Search

When you’re applying for a job, you don’t just want to get noticed: You want to stand out as the best applicant the hiring committee has ever seen. You know you’re the perfect person for the job—and you want them to know that, too.

But how, exactly, do you do that? We pulled together a roundup of our all-time best job search advice, from getting noticed before you apply to acing the interview, plus tips from our favorite career experts—to bring you 35 ways to put yourself ahead of the pack.

Get Noticed (Before You Even Apply!)

1. “The fastest way to an interview is when someone I know makes a referral or recommendation,” says Raj Aggarwal, founder and CEO of Localytics. So, if you have contacts who can refer you to a job or introduce you to a hiring manager, by all means, spend your time and energy there—it will have the greatest payoff! Marie Burns, @marieburns 

2. Recruiters spend countless hours scouring LinkedIn in search of the high performers. Knowing this, you’ll serve yourself well to market yourself as a high performer, through your verbiage (think action words, accomplishments) and by having multiple endorsements. Want some? Start endorsing others—they’re bound to return the favor. Jenny Foss, @jobjenny 

Craft a Winning Resume and Cover Letter

7. Use as many facts, figures, and numbers as you can in your resume bullet points. How many people were impacted by your work? By what percentage did you exceed your goals? By quantifying your accomplishments, you really allow the hiring manager to picture the level of work or responsibility you needed to achieve this accomplishment. Amy Michalenko

8. When you’re writing your cover letter, remember that the hiring manager is likely going to be reading a lot of them (and she probably doesn’t really enjoy reading them much more than you like writing them). So, while you want to make the letter professional, you also want to put some of your own personality in it. Crafting an engaging letter with some color will catch people’s eyes and make them think, “Wow, this would be a fun person to work with.” Erin Greenawald, @erinaceously

Make a Killer First Impression

16. The person at the front desk may not be the hiring manager—but that doesn’t mean his or her impression of you doesn’t matter. In fact, some companies specifically ask their front desk attendants to report back on the demeanor of interviewees who come through the door. Katie Douthwaite, @kdouth

17. A Fortune 500 CEO once said that when he had to choose between two candidates with similar qualifications, he gave the position to the candidate with the better handshake. Extreme? Perhaps, but he’s actually not alone in his judgment. Check out these video instructions for the perfect handshake. Olivia Fox Cabone

Ace the Interview

22. Overall, the most impressive candidates are those who genuinely care about the company and job they are interviewing for, have done their research, and are able to sell themselves based on that information. For someone interviewing for my team personally, one particular candidate read all my blogs, followed me on Twitter, and came in fully prepared based on my online advice and killed the interview. Marie Burns, @marieburns

23. Take your portfolio to a job interview, and refer to the items inside while discussing your work experience. Saying “I planned a fundraising event from beginning to end” is one thing—showing the event invitation, program, budget, and volunteer guidelines you put together is completely another. Chrissy Scivicque, @EatYourCareer

See all 35 ways and the complete TheDailyMuse article

he Daily Muse is the daily publication of The Muse, your ultimate career destination that offers exciting job opportunitiesexpert advice, and a peek behind the scenes into fantastic companies and career paths. Learn morecontact us, and find us on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Four LinkedIn Mistakes That Could Hurt Your Career

by Pamelia Brown

LinkedIn has quickly become one of the largest and most accessible professional social networks out there, and because of this, it’s imperative that everyone who wishes to maximize their career potential join LinkedIn, set up a profile, and begin networking.

Of course, as with many other social networks, there are unwritten rules of etiquette that you must first figure out and then abide as you embark on your LinkedIn journey. Unfortunately, figuring out these rules and not making mistakes or breaking these rules is rather hard for those new to LinkedIn or even social networks in general.

Below I’ve tried to list a handful of mistakes that many LinkedIn users make, and I’ve tried to incorporate solutions into each section. Please, if you know LinkedIn well, feel free to add to the information here in the comments section. And, as always, happy job hunting!

The following are mistakes many LinkedIn users make and how you can avoid them:

1. Failing to Understand Social Networking Contexts

The biggest thing many LinkedIn users fail to understand is that LinkedIn is simply one of many social networks out there. No matter how professional you try to make your LinkedIn profile, the fact that a crazy Facebook profile or irreverent Twitter account under your name exists could significantly hurt your career chances. Do not ignore the other social networks you’ve joined, because recruiters, hiring managers, and others within the industry are looking at these other sites too!

Solution: Google yourself constantly. Manage your entire online presence. Edit your Tweets, check your photos on Facebook, untag yourself from unpleasant photos and conversations, and watch what you post on whatever forums you’ve joined. Always assume that your LinkedIn account is merely a portal that a potential employer can enter in order to access your entire online persona.

2. Lacking A Good Profile Photo

This is relatively simple. I’ve seen so many people fail to upload a good profile photo. I can understand why people would wish to not upload a photo; however, lacking a photo can seriously hurt your chances of getting clicked. Think about a recruiter. He or she is browsing entries; is he or she more likely to click on a photo or a tiny bit of text in the search results page? An updated photo of yourself will assure the recruiter that you are, indeed, human after all, with all your quirks and faults.

Solution: It’s much easier for someone browsing search results to connect with a human face than a bit of text, so upload a photo as soon as possible!

Tips 3,4, and the complete article

You Have to Be “Recruitable”

Monday, October 28, 2013

8 Tips for Writing a Resume

Posted by Doug White

Attention creative professionals: The traditional resume is alive and well. A new TCG survey finds employers still favor a Word document or PDF version over infographic, social and video resumes.

More and more job seekers are getting creative and playing around with novel resume formats. But before you start filming a string of wacky Vine videos or designing an intricate infographic to highlight your experience, be aware that most employers still expect (and want) a plain old resume. A majority of advertising and marketing executives said they prefer a traditional resume, like a Word document or PDF, from candidates applying for creative roles, according to a recent TCG survey.

Even in today's highly digital world, there isn't great demand for infographic, video or social resumes. Here are eight tips for writing a resume that's clear, concise and compelling:

  • Create customized content. Some people view job hunting strictly as a numbers game. They blast the same cookie-cutter resume to every employer with an open creative position. Bad move. Targeting your pitch to individual employers is a much better strategy. Thoroughly research the company or agency online, follow them on social media and tap members of your network for additional insights. Once you have a sense of the role and organization, play up your professional skills, experience and achievements most relevant to that particular opportunity. While you don't need to start from scratch every time, a little resume tailoring can make a big impact.
  • Key in on keywords. Who'll see your resume first? Well, it might not even be a human. Employers often use computer programs to scan resumes for keywords. How can you boost your odds of making the initial cut? Use the job ad as your guide, weaving in keywords wherever possible (as long as the terms accurately describe your abilities, of course).
  • Proofread, proofread, proofread. A designer friend of mine asked me to proofread his resume last year. When he saw I flagged a few typos, he laughed and said, "See, I'm not a word person." OK, dude, but your job does require attention to detail, right? Time-strapped hiring managers are far less likely to interview careless candidates. In fact, 76 percent of executives polled by our firm said it takes only one or two typos on a resume to eliminate an applicant from contention. Guard against goofs by running spell-check, but also slowly proofread your resume both on screen and on paper. Asking a copywriter pal for editing assistance won't hurt either.

  • Keep it simple. Steer clear of convoluted jargon, flowery prose and distracting graphics, fonts or colors that can make your resume difficult to read. Instead, let your portfolio showcase your creativity. When crafting your resume, use clear section headings and bullet points for easy navigation. In addition, don't muddle your message by cluttering your resume with hobbies and other extraneous personal information that has no connection to your career. It's great that you love mountain biking and going to hipster bars, but referencing those pastimes won't get you a job.

  • Tips 5-8 and the complete article
  • Answering Seven LinkedIn Job Search Questions

    By Jan Wallen

    I took advantage of a recent lunch with fellow MENG member Jan Wallen, an expert on selling online who literally wrote the book on using LinkedIn, to ask her LinkedIn job search questions relating to how  executives should use this social networking site.

    Following  are Jan’s answers to the LinkedIn  job search questions I’ve been asked most often following my “How to Write an Effective Resume” webinar.

    Today’s Seven LinkedIn Job Search Questions–with More Tomorrow

    1.  Can you quickly give me a few key thoughts about using LinkedIn in my job search?
    About 80% of companies look on LinkedIn first to find candidates.  It’s critical to have your LinkedIn profile up-to-date and optimized and to be sure it represents you well.

    When you’re conducting a job search, you’re selling yourself, and your profile is your marketing brochure.  It’s not meant to be your life story or a long, chronological list of accomplishments.  When it’s optimized with keywords, it’s more likely to come up when companies and recruiters search on LinkedIn. There’s SEO and now there’s LinkedIn profile optimization.

    It’s very important that your profile is written to showcase your expertise because a junior person in a company may be looking on LinkedIn first to do the initial screening.  They’re making a short-list of candidates to be interviewed, and they may not have the business depth to grasp that your profile fits the job description they’ve been given.

    2.  Under my name, should I focus on SEO or positioning myself?
    This LinkedIn job search question relates to your Professional Headline which is below your name on your LinkedIn profile.  Many people put a job title there.  It’s much better to position yourself with a tagline or headline that shows your expertise and what you’re known for.

    LinkedIn has a search algorithm which they change periodically, the same as the search engines.  All sections of your profile are searched.  When companies and recruiters search LinkedIn and your profile comes up in a list, it sets you apart in a positive way when your Professional Headline stands out from all the rest.  Therefore, it’s best if you can position yourself and also have keywords in your headline.

    3.  Is  a premium package worth the cost?
    The premium accounts are getting a lot of attention now.  And LinkedIn is encouraging members to upgrade to the premium levels.  The recent changes that LinkedIn has made mean that premium account members receive more information and more detail than those who haven’t upgraded.

    LinkedIn has recently made changes to the features that are available in the free basic account and those available in the premium level accounts.  It doesn’t make sense to pay for something if it doesn’t give you value.  The best way to decide whether one of the premium accounts is best for you is to check their Comparison Matrix.  You’ll see line-by-line the features that each premium level gives you.
    To see the Comparison Matrix, go to the black menu bar in LinkedIn and click on Upgrade.  You’ll see the matrix and can compare each account level.

    Some of the differences that may make it worth it for you to upgrade include:
    InMails—Are LinkedIn’s special messages, and they’re available when you have a premium level account.  Of course, you can always send a message to your connections.  If you’re not connected, premium accounts allow you to send InMails.  My guideline is that if you look up profiles and they say Send InMail 50% of the time or more, it may make sense to upgrade.

    Who’s Viewed My Profile—You’ll see more details if you have the premium level accounts.

    Advanced Searches—You’ll be able to search based on more criteria with the premium level accounts. For example, you can specify a list of companies by size and if they’re a part of Fortune 500 when you have the premium level accounts, which could be important to a LinkedIn job search.

    Questions 4-7 and the complete article

    Thursday, October 24, 2013

    How to Job Hunt While Still Employed

    It obviously makes more sense to look for a job while you still have one. After all, you won’t feel the pressure to pick any old job that you’re offered because you have to pay your mortgage, car loan, credit card bills or because the gap between jobs on your resume is growing wider and wider. That said, job hunting while you’re still working can present its own set of prickly problems. Here’s how to safely look for a new job — without risking the one you currently have.

    Don’t be obvious. The last thing you want to do is alert your current boss that you are job hunting. Even if you already have one foot out the door, don’t be too obvious about your job searching efforts. Schedule your interviews before or after work, or if you have to, take a day off and try to bundle them together. After all, if you show up to work in a three-piece suit (and your normal attire is jeans and a tee shirt), you’re going to attract some very unnecessary attention at the office.

    Don’t tell your coworkers. You might be tempted to tell your colleagues and work bestie about your job search. But sharing the news, even with a couple of close office friends, could potentially result in your boss finding out about your plans a lot sooner than you’d like. Some companies can even let you go if they find out that you’re seeking employment elsewhere. And at the very least, your boss can make your life miserable while you’re still there, forcing you to quit before you’re ready.

    Don’t use office equipment. After a brutal meeting with your boss, you might be tempted to storm back to your cubicle and openly — and passive aggressively — troll job boards. Not a good idea. Your company most likely has tracking programs built into your computer or can search your history to see the sites you’ve been on. So save your job searching — and applying — for after work.

    More tips and the complete Mashable article

    Join Us For LinkedIn Mobile Day [VIDEO]

    Doug Madey, October 22, 2013

    Today in San Francisco at the LinkedIn Mobile Day we announced exciting mobile news, including a completely refreshed LinkedIn app for iPad, a preview of a fully integrated Pulse experience with LinkedIn, and the newly unveiled LinkedIn Intro. These new products help reinvent, reimagine, and redefine how professionals work on mobile.

    If you missed the live stream from LinkedIn Mobile Day, or just want to watch again, below is a replay of the event.

    In addition, we hit the exclusive product fair following the presentation to hear more about the new products from the people who helped bring these experiences to life.

    See all of the videos and read the complete post.

    Wednesday, October 23, 2013

    7 Words I Never Want to See on Your Resume

    Recently, I came across a post I highly recommend: “7 Words I Never Want to See in Your Blog Posts”.

    That inspired me to think about the words that – for recruiters and team builders – can create a terrible first impression. Not words like “dependable” and “detail oriented” – those have been blogged about ad nauseam (and I don’t blame people for using words that old-school experts have espoused for decades). I also don’t mean the clichés that rear their ugly heads far too often during an interview or follow-up like “It is what it is…

    I’m referring to the words that show me a lack of effort, leadership or confidence – and make me want to disqualify the applicant from consideration whenever I see them.

    Without further delay, here are the seven words I never want to see on a resume:

    1. Approximately

    You have to approximate? You don’t know what you did? Or you do know, but creating a good first impression wasn’t a big priority for you when the resume was sent to me. If you don’t know – find out. If you do know – show some confidence, and tell me down to the tenth percentile what you accomplished. That is impressive!

    2. Assisted

    Unless you work in a dental office or are a point guard, I don’t want to hear about your “assists”. We hire leaders here, so I want to know that you were the one being assisted. In a humble way, tell me what you did, how you did it, and how many you lead in the process.

    3. Attempted

    Never, ever tell me what you wanted to do. Tell me what you did in an emphatic tone, including a quantitative statement, Good examples: “Increased customer satisfaction by 115%” and “Exceeded quota by an average of 31.2% every quarter”

    Words 4-7 and the complete article

    Trying to Run a Covert Job Search on LinkedIn? Pay Attention to These Settings


    Want to ensure your LinkedIn activity is as covert as possible?

    You MUST understand the site’s broadcast message types, Activity Broadcasts and Activity Feed, and the differences between them.

    Often confused with each other, these controls allow messages to be widely distributed to other
    LinkedIn users, informing them of your activity (and basically prompting them to look at your Profile to interpret your actions).

    Here’s a close-up look at the type of information you can control with Activity Broadcasts and Activity Feed settings — with key points on how to customize and maximize these messages for your job search:

    1 – Activity Broadcasts.
    Activity Broadcasts are the dead-giveaways sent out when you change your Profile. So, if you’re tweaking your Headline to arrive at the best fit, or finally populating your Profile with a ton of new data, this is the one to turn off first.

    You can view your Activity Broadcast options by going to Settings, then “Turn on/off your activity broadcasts.”

    Here, you only have On (“Let people know when you change your profile, make recommendations, or follow companies”) and Off.

    As you can see, this setting also gives your Connections a heads-up that you’ve written a Recommendation or are following Companies. These are rarely considered high-profile activities, but they’re included in LinkedIn’s definition of a Broadcast.

    Typically, turning your Activity Broadcasts off during a job search is a good idea (even recommended by LinkedIn), since Profile updates are usually the first sign that you’re preparing for flight.

    Another bonus:  if you’re trying out new Headlines or continually adding keywords, turning off Activity Broadcasts will prevent your contacts from being hammered during each iteration.

    2 – Activity Feed.

    See more on "Activity Feed", more tips, and the complete CareerRocketeer article

    Tuesday, October 22, 2013

    Get Social: 5 Simple Social Media Tactics That Lead to a Job


    Do you stay up till all hours of the night, posting your résumé and responding to ads on job boards like Monster or CareerBuilder? Is this the essence of your job hunt? If so, you are far from alone.

    If you haven't been successful using this tactic, there is a good reason: Companies report that while 42 percent of their applicants come via job boards, only 14 percent of the people they hire come from this source. These numbers, and others in this article, were first revealed in Jobvite's 2013 Social Recruiting Survey of more than 1,600 recruiters and human resources professionals.

    Across all industries, there is a whopping 94 percent adoption of social recruiting. These days, recruiting and hiring are all about networking, both in-person and online. It is hard to overstate the importance of your online presence as key to a successful job search.

    As you might expect, 94 percent of recruiters use LinkedIn and 65 percent use Facebook. Lest you focus your energies only on the big two, bear in mind that more than half of recruiters and HR staffing specialists are using Twitter. And Jobvite identifies other "specialized, localized and up-and-coming social networks" that recruiters utilize to source talent: Instagram, Vimeo, GitHub, Stack Overflow, XING, Yammer and Pinterest

    Understand what sites are used for what purposes. Companies use different websites differently. For example, Twitter is great for a company showcasing itself. It is easy and free to send out tweets announcing open positions in an effort to gain corporate visibility and draw you to a company's website.

    Facebook's company pages are used to create a following, to put out much more information about the values, products and services of a company. This way, it builds its own employer brand and reputation. More than half of all companies utilize Facebook as a means of bolstering their own employee referral programs where they reward current employees for bringing to their attention others who are successfully recruited to come on board.

    Tip: Look at what companies are saying about themselves on Twitter and Facebook. Follow them, and begin to interact with them to gain your own credibility. Build relationships, followers and friends as a means of networking yourself inside a company.

    Tip: Ignore LinkedIn at your own peril. This website does it all. Recruiters use it to search for candidates, contact them, keep tabs on people and vet them as well as posting jobs. Make certain that your profile is complete and up-to-date, join and become seen in LinkedIn's groups, and look for posted opportunities both in the main "Jobs" tab as well as those different jobs posted within the myriad of LinkedIn's groups accessible only to group members.

    Understand what recruiters look for on social networks.

    More Tips, Tactics, and the complete article

    Arnie Fertig is the head coach of JOBHUNTERCOACH.COM, where he utilizes his extensive background in HR Staffing and as owner of a recruiting company to help mid-career job-hunters land their next job. Arnie provides one-to-one coaching services to individuals throughout the U.S. in all aspects of the job hunt, including: resume writing, personal branding, utilizing social media, enhancing networking skills, preparing for interviews, and negotiating compensation.

    15 Steps to Your Perfect LinkedIn Profile

    Kim Garst

    Does creating or improving your LinkedIn Profile intimidate you?

    Are you lost as to where to start?

    Would you like a step-by-step guide on how to create the Perfect LinkedIn Profile?

    Then you are in the right place. Here you will learn, step-by-step,  the top 15 enhancements to make to your LinkedIn Profile.  Watch your profile transform before your eyes; A masterpiece of perfection. 

    Let’s start at the top -

    #1 -   Your Name – Keep it Simple: Use your first and last name. This is not a place to put your business name, or your nickname, or what “everyone” is calling you.  Followers want to know that you are a genuine person, first and for most.

    #2 – Your Headline – This is a HEADLINE! Therefore, putting your company name and your position is not enough, nor correct.  Rather, you want your headline to be attention grabbing! You want to build intrigue and excitement.  It is also a place where you want to include your top keyword phrase or two.

    #6 – You Specialties – At the bottom of your summary you will be asked to list out your specialties.  This is another important place to put your keyword phrases.

    #13 – Contact You For… - Here, just as you did in your  “Summary Section” make a bullet point list of reasons why someone should get in contact with you.  You want to describe your IDEAL client. (This is not everyone.)  Also, put down a description of people or companies you’d like to have contact you, even if they never have in the past. Again, you can only manifest what you ask for!

    Monday, October 21, 2013

    4 Steps to Search Engine Optimizing Your LinkedIn Profile For Greater Visibility

    As a business owner you continuously strive to expand your marketing reach. With the various social networking sites out there, you may be wondering how you can utilize them to improve your website traffic, and ultimately, generate more leads or sales. Here we’ll discuss a few simple but effective steps for optimizing your LinkedIn profile to achieve better rankings in the search engines. This in turn means more traffic to your business website, or as I like to say; more leads, more clients, more sales.

    First Step – Correctly Utilize Keyword Anchor Text and Links
    This step is critical if you want to increase the search engine optimization (SEO) of your business website. When creating a link to your website within your LinkedIn profile, the result could potentially be a profitable backlink, which is why it’s very important to use your relevant website keywords as anchor text. Consider anchoring your most powerful keyword or keyphrase as your link, instead of “http:…, “My Website”, or “My Blog”.

    Second Step – Keyword Sprinkle Your Profile

    When you’re creating your LinkedIn profile, it’s important that your focus is around utilizing your most important and relevant keywords for your business website. Try to keep your profile rich with powerful and relevant keywords and avoid keyword stuffing.

    Back to Basics: 11 Tips to Help You Ace the Interview

    by Campus to Career

    Your resume impressed, and you did well in your phone screen. You’ve made it to the face-to-face interview. You’ve set yourself apart from other candidates and showed you have the potential a recruiter looks for in a future employee.

    The next step (notice I didn’t say “last step” – there’s a little more after this) is to pass the in-person interview. To do just that, follow these 11 time-tested tips…


    Research | Know the company inside and out. Study up on their corporate culture, your fit within, and focus on what you can bring to them to make the company better.

    Respect | Treat the receptionists, assistants, custodians, EVERYBODY with respect. You never know who your interviewers will ask about your behavior after you leave. Simply be courteous.

    During the Interview

    Answer the Questions | Know some of the basic interview questions that will be asked. Be truthful. Provide concise, real-world examples with quantifiable results. The more you display your analytical skills, the better. Show the impact of your leadership.

    After the Interview

    Know the Timeline | As the interview ends, it is appropriate to ask what the hiring timeline looks like for that specific position. Ask them when you can follow up.

    All 11 Tips and the complete article

    Wednesday, October 16, 2013

    20 Proven Ways to Beat Your Job Search Competition

    by Brazen Careerist

    Looking to stand out from the pack during your job search?

    As an executive search consultant and civic-connector, I’ve conducted hundreds of interviews and networking meetings. Here are some of my observations from years on the job… insights you can use to beat out your job search competition:

    2. Without exception, people help people they like. Be likable. Help others without asking for anything in return. Say thank you. Follow up. Actively listen. Be present.

    4. We now live in a 2-degrees-of-separation world. Don’t burn bridges.

    5. Take the high road. If you can’t say something nice about a former employer or co-worker, well, you know what to do.

    8. Your email says something about you. Retire the Hotmail / CompuServe account.

    9. When interviewing, think of it as a conversation, not an interrogation. When appropriate, pause, think and reflect before responding.

    10. Body language is 80 percent of how we’re heard and perceived, especially in an interview. Be cognizant of your facial expressions and what you’re doing with your arms and hands.

    14. Most unsolicited networking requests come in some form of “please help me.” How can you network differently?

    15. The questions posed by candidates are a crucial insight into how they think. Prepare and ask smart questions during your interviews!

    Yes, your resume matters. So does your LinkedIn profile, of course. But if you really want to stand out above your competition, follow this advice. A recruiter will thank you. And you’ll get the job.

    See all 20 ways and the complete article

    10 LinkedIn Headlines that Stand Out from the Crowd


    The headline is possibly the most important part on your LinkedIn profile. It is your 120 character hook to people finding you in a LinkedIn search, it should be about what you do as opposed to what you are. It should be memorable and enticing enough for someone to click on your profile and not your competitors.

    Here is a compilation of a few interesting and creative LinkedIn headlines from around the world. Some are funny, some are memorable and some are very professional. Do let us know which is your favorite below in the comments section!

    1. Left & right brain thinker

    Giacomo Bracci Helsen clearly uses his whole brain when coming up with new strategies for design.

    2. Bleeding for his art

    Glenn Le Santo keeps it brief. If you have ever seen Glenn’s speed of content creation you would definitely agree with his statement in the headline.

    3. Wickless Candles Fun?

    How exactly are candles fun? Well the headlines sounds like fun. Bit of a tongue twister perhaps but certainly an intriguing headline by Rebecca Brown.

    4. The clear value statement

    Our great friend and LinkedIn supremo Ed Han has gone for the classic personal brand statement with clear value to the reader.

    Headlines 5-10 and the complete UnderCoverRecruiter article

    Tuesday, October 15, 2013

    7 Tips For Writing A Great LinkedIn Invitation

    5 Ways to Lose a Recruiter's Interest


    Remember that Kate Hudson and Matthew McConaughey movie, "How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days," in which Hudson purposely did wacky things to ditch McConaughey in the spirit of article research? You might be similarly self-sabotaging your chances at a job. If you follow these quick and easy steps, you too may put the kibosh on your candidacy before you even had a shot:

    1. Leave a voicemail without saying your last name. Bonus points if you also don't leave your phone number. In-house corporate recruiters are extremely busy managing relationships with countless hiring managers, not to mention internal employees as candidates, systems concerns for compliance purposes and meeting their numbers. Yes, they work closely with candidates, but the number of them could hike into several dozen.

    When you leave a voicemail with a recruiter, speak slowly, say your entire name, and while you're at it, leave your phone number. Even if you've been speaking frequently with the recruiter and think he or she recognizes your voice and has your number on speed dial, provide it anyway.
    Or you can do the alternative: Mumble, omit pertinent information and wonder why you never got a call back.

    2. Every day, follow up via email regarding your status. You should indeed follow up if you haven't heard back, but every day? Too much. You start crossing the line to stalker when it's on a daily basis (add some phone calls without leaving a message, a tweet here and there and LinkedIn profile view, and you've reached scary status.)

    Instead, be assertive and professional. Follow up a week later, and if you don't hear back, ping them again a few days later. It's actually a good gesture, because it's like saying, "Hey, remember me? Eyes over here." Especially when a recruiter's eyes are here, there and everywhere else.

    Ways 3-5 and the complete article

    Vicki Salemi is the author of Big Career in the Big City and creator, producer and host of Score That Job. This New York City-based career expert and public speaker possesses more than 15 years of corporate experience in recruiting and human resources. She coaches college grads individually with an intense Job Search Boot Camp, writes and edits the MediaJobsDaily blog on Mediabistro, and conducts interviews as a freelance journalist with celebrities and notable names. BlogHer named her one of the country's top 25 career and business women bloggers worth reading.

    Friday, October 11, 2013

    5 Clues Your LinkedIn Strategy Needs Help

    So, you signed up for your free profile on LinkedIn. You’ve even invested time optimizing your profile. Congratulations! Now you’re wondering if your LinkedIn profile and strategy are actually working. Here are five key signs that you need to re-think or re-energize your LinkedIn strategy.

    2. You Hardly Appear In Searches
    LinkedIn tells you how often your profile has appeared in searches, and even provides a handy graph so that you can check trends. As you complete and flush out your profile, you should appear in searches more often. If you’re hardly appearing in searches, then you need to check the content of your profile. Is your profile targeted toward a career goal, or it is scattershot? Did you use keywords and other critical resume-writing techniques? How descriptive have you been in the various sections?

    4. People Don’t Reach Out To You
    After you’ve been active on LinkedIn for awhile, users should start reaching out to you to connect. If no one is asking to connect with you, then you may need to rethink how you’re using LinkedIn. Are you courteous and professional in all your interactions? Do you limit your updates and interactions to professional (rather than personal) ones?

    Do you promote others in your network (for example, retweeting others’ blog posts) instead of limiting yourself to self-promotion? Have you joined one or two targeted open networking groups to help build your LinkedIn network quickly? Is the text of your headline and summary compelling so that people would want you in their networks?

    43 Resume Tips That Will Help Get You Hired

    When you haven’t updated your resume in a while, it can be hard to know where to start. What experiences and accomplishments should you include for the jobs you’ve got your eye on? What new resume rules and trends should you be following? And seriously, one page or two?

    Well, search no more: We’ve compiled the best resume advice out there into one place. Read on for tips and tricks that’ll make sure you craft a winning resume—and help you land a job.

    Telling Your Story

    1. Think of your resume not as a comprehensive list of your career history, but as a marketing document selling you as the perfect person for a the job. For each resume you send out, you’ll want to highlight only the accomplishments and skills that are most relevant to the job at hand (even if that means you don’t include all of your experience).

    2. Keep a resume master list on your computer where you keep any information you’ve ever included on a resume: old positions, bullet points tailored for different applications, special projects that only sometimes make sense to include. Then, when you’re crafting each resume, it’s just a matter of cutting and pasting relevant information.


    7. Use a basic but modern font, like Helvetica, Arial, or Century Gothic. And make your resume easy on hiring managers’ eyes by using a font size between 10 and 12.

    Work Experience

    12. As a rule, you should only show the most recent 10-15 years of your career history and only include the experience relevant to the positions to which you are applying.

    13. No matter how long you’ve been in a job, or how much you’ve accomplished there, you shouldn’t have more than 6-7 bullets in a given section. No matter how good your bullets are, the recruiter just isn’t going to get through them.


    24. Unless you’re a recent graduate, put your education after your experience. Chances are, your last 1-2 jobs are more important and relevant to you getting the job than where you went to college is.

    Finishing Touches

    38. Ditch the phrase “References available upon request.” If a company wants to hire you, it will ask you for references—and it will assume that you have them. There’s no need to address the obvious (and doing so might even make you look a little presumptuous!).

    39. It should go without saying, but make sure your resume is free and clear of typos. But don’t rely on spell check and grammar check alone—ask family or friends to take a look at it for you (or get some tips on how to edit your own work).

    See all 43 tips and the complete article

    Thursday, October 10, 2013

    How To Get A Job When You're Over 50 - 10 Tips

    1) Pull yourself through the transition period.

    Many older workers feel it's their turn to take it easy if they've been laid off after a long time at one job. This can lead to depression. Let yourself go through that stage, but do make sure to move forward.

    2) Overcome the notion that you are out of the loop.

    Just because you worked in the same job for many years doesn't mean the world has left you behind.

    3) Use the "seven stories" approach.
    Make a list of seven achievements you're proud of. This will help you build self-esteem and clarify your skills and values.        

    4) Let people know you're looking.

    One of the first steps of a job search if you're over 50 and have been unemployed for a while is telling people you are seriously looking for work.   

    See all 10 tips and the complete Forbes article  


    Wednesday, October 9, 2013

    Infographic: The perfect LinkedIn status update

    By Kristin Piombino

    Follow this helpful guide to create an update for your brand that will reach the right audience and engage them.

    Between Facebook posts, tweets, Pinterest boards, and everything else on your social media plate, you probably don't spend much time thinking about how to craft the perfect LinkedIn status update.
     Luckily, SalesForce has a handy guide that can help you get the job done.

    To make sure your update is informative, engaging, and seen by the right audience, consider these steps:

    1. Think about the information you're about to post. Share breaking news, industry trends, and sneak peeks. And keep your update short—limiting your post to 50 characters could increase engagement by 28 percent.

    2. Include a call to action.Add a link to your update to drive people to a blog post, website—anywhere you like.

    3.Make sure the right people see your update.Narrow your audience by industry, location, role, or company size.

    But your work isn't done once you click "share." Read people's comments, and jump into the conversation. And don't forget to see how successful your post was. Track shares and engagement, and remember what works for the next time you post.

    For more details, check out the infographic and the complete article

    10 Job Search Mistakes That Will Keep You Unemployed

    by Glassdoor

    Like work itself, the job search can be stressful and riddled with anxiety. In turn, we tend to make mistakes that extend our hunt for that next gig… and keep us unemployed much long than necessary.
    Avoid these 10 common job search mistakes, and keep your job search, and career, on track:

    1. Lying on Your Resume

    While a resume is a marketing piece and you do not have to disclose every detail of your career history, you still must not lie. For example, do not fudge dates or titles and do not exaggerate your quantified statements.

    4. Not Sending a Proper Follow-up Thank You

    After an informational interview, one-on-one meeting or mentor meeting, sending a thank you note shows you respect and appreciate the fact that the person you met with took time out of his or her busy schedule to speak with you. See #3.

    5. Showing Up Late for a Job Interview

    This can only get worse if you then make up a lame excuse as to why you were delayed.

    8. Complaining on Social Media
    Stop posting that you are frustrated with your job search, are mad at the world and that you were treated unfairly, once again.

    All 10 job search mistakes and the full article