Arden Thoughts

On Survival and Success in Silicon Valley

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LinkedIn tips you need to know

“LinkedIn is built like a skyscraper, but almost everyone is still in the lobby” -John Hill from HigherEd Evangelist at LinkedIn.

I attended a session with John this week on how departments and individuals at Stanford can best utilize this professional social network. Considering myself a proficient LinkedIn user, I was surprised to learn a lot of new features and strategies that I am confident will improve my personal and professional use.  Wanting to share these tips further, I’ve broken down his recommendations into a few key categories.

Getting started

  •  “Personal branding is only going to accelerate”: To access the value of LinkedIn, you (obviously) must first create a profile. If you for some reason have not done this, please stop reading now and address this immediately (no really, right now). In an age where you can’t control all that is said about you online, this is a great way to highlight your skills and accomplishments.
  • Focus on the basics: Despite his sales position, John recommends NOT purchasing the premium LinkedIn package until you feel comfortable with the standard features (being able to maneuver around the lobby is essential before stepping on the elevator to the penthouse).
  • Avoid feeling overwhelmed: Not having an online network when you’re getting started can be daunting, John recommends 30 connections as a good baseline for taking advantage of the site’s features.

Relationship Management Tips

  • “Give without expectation for return”: Stressing the importance of networking beyond the internet, John reminds us that LinkedIn is not intended to replace offline interactions. When building successful relationships you should seek ways to help others in the “real world” without expectation for repayment.

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Filed under social media job search virtual community linkedin networking professional