You can use LinkedIn in your job search by networking, by directly applying to posted jobs and/or by researching companies you’re interested in working for. Regardless of how you use it, however, it’s important to avoid making unprofessional mistakes whilst doing so. Here are some of the most common ones that we as job seekers are likely to fall foul of.
Uploading a photo more suited to Facebook
Yes, that photo of you skydiving or sitting in a bikini on the beach, may be more exciting than a professional headshot, but people will trust you more if you use a profile picture where they can see your face close-up and unobstructed. Save the holiday photos for Facebook.
Leaving your profile incomplete
People—as in employers, recruiters and headhunters—look at your profile to find out as much about you as possible. By leaving your profile incomplete, you’re wasting this free opportunity to tell the world of work what you’re about and what you want to do. Fill in every field applicable to you to get the most out of your profile and out of LinkedIn as a whole.
Adding loads and loads of Connections
Instead of sending out Connection requests to everyone and anyone, think in terms of quality over quantity. It’s not how many people you know but who you know. Only seek to connect with people related to the field you want to work in. Even then, you should ask yourself if the individual in question could realistically be of value to you in your job search.
Joining groups and then not participating
When we first sign up to LinkedIn, we browse its extensive selection of discussion groups and join the ones relevant to us. However, too many of us then neglect to actually post anything in these groups, let alone get involved in ongoing discussions or even start our own discussion. Being a member of a group in name only will not help you find a job. Be visible.
Spamming people’s inboxes
Once someone is in your LinkedIn network, whether they’re an employer, recruiter or networker, that does not give you license to persistently spam them with messages asking for help or a job. Of course it’s OK to make an initial request for help, advice or information. That’s what networking is all about—building relationships and supporting one another. However, if someone you’ve messaged responds by saying they’re unable to help you at the moment, don’t waste your time and damage your reputation by forcing the issue. Accept the position they’re in and move on.
Now you know what not to do, find out what you should be doing by checking out Position Ignition’s exclusive eBook 125 LinkedIn Job Search Tips--as recommended in Forbes!
By Nisa Chitakasem, Founder of Position Ignition, the UK’s leading Career Consulting Company. Nisa co-founded Position Ignition.com to provide career consulting to people looking for guidance and support through their career change, new career direction, job search and career development.
- Job Searching in the 21st Century
- 12 Ways Your LinkedIn Profile Will Get You a Job (part 1)
- 12 Ways Your LinkedIn Profile Will Get You a Job Part 2