the business card of the 21st century- Tracey Thomas, MD - Grieves Pryce
Should you be concerned if you do not have a Linkedin profile?
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Increasing numbers of recruiters are using automated systems to trawl Linkedin and feed prospective candidate information back to them therefore negating the need to search Linkedin manually.
What can Linkedin offer you?
Exposure. If you need your peers to be able to find you then it is hard to disagree with how effective Linkedin has become at this facet of business. The world has changed, and if your peer group wants to contact you then you can be certain that Linkedin will be one of the first places, if not the first place they will begin. But why is this the case? Users, millions of them. The uptake has been quite phenomenal:
If you are not part of this business network then the probability is that you will be missing opportunities. You may also find the same issue if your Linkedin profile is not fully utilising pertinent career history and key skills or is partially complete.
How will this impact you?
People, in general, are prone to looking for the shortest route or easiest option. Recruiters are no exception to this rule, and if they can generate a candidate list of 20, 30 or even a 100 heads then they will be satisfied with the result. This will only change if, after screening, the list proves to be light on the required talent fit. Even then, the recruiter will still look again at Linkedin convinced that the person required is still there and must have been overlooked!
The irony being this may be correct as further scrutinisation could reveal candidates that were not harvested because of search criteria and matching. Finally, the recruiter having looked at every possible candidate on Linkedin might go back to basics and carry out some search work via the Linkedin companies profiles!
We are able to write your Linkedin Profile or can tailor and optimise existing Linkedin Profiles for Executives at all levels. Of course, discretion is paramount. We work with you to avoid revealing detail or figures that could be confidential without diminishing the impact of the profile.
Do I need a photo of myself?
Yes: If you wish to use your profile for the purpose of job hunting and general networking then we would strongly advise the use of the photo. Not any photo either. Do not fall for the machismo approach of using a picture from your holiday spearfishing. This is a business site, and if your picture is anything other than professional it will just court mockery and criticism.
No: If the sole purpose of your profile is to ensure that you have a presence and can be contacted then you can justify not including a picture, but we would still say it’s a worthwhile exercise.
Why is a photo important?
Basic psychology. Apparently, you are likely to be viewed 7 more times if you include a picture. The analogy that you should consider is would you sell a house online without pictures? If you are concerned with how you look in pictures then you needn’t be as generally people are not actually looking at your photo (which is seemingly a contradiction). This is the psychology element. Generally, the person viewing is looking at your profile detail and the fact that you have a picture is reassurance for the viewer. Without a picture, the profile looks incomplete and the viewer starts to wonder what’s wrong. You do not need to worry about a professional photo. Providing you have a smartphone or fairly decent digital camera, then with patience you should be able to ask someone to take a picture of you that can be used.
Linkedin is a powerful business networking tool, with a membership currently (2013) in excess of 225 million business users across the world, including many key decision makers from FTSE 250 and Fortune 500 companies. You can no longer ignore a game changer like Linkedin. By harnessing its reach and controlling your level of visibility you gain control without needing to compromise on your core principles. Regardless of your reasons for not using Linkedin (concerns about privacy can be controlled within your profile), being on this list could prove a critical factor in your career. This is the business card Rolodex of the 21st century…for now. Capitalise.
If used effectively and creatively Linkedin can enable you to;
- Establish and cultivate a strong network; raising your profile, visibility, and credibility within the business community.
- Keep abreast of market developments and business related issues.
- Identify potential sales, business development, job opportunities, and referrals.
- Interface and make links with other like-minded business leaders and influencers.
- Engage with HRs, head hunters, recruiters, and prospective employers.
Investing in an eloquently written, succinct and keyword rich Linkedin profile will ensure that the first impression you give online is a positive one.
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