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LinkedIn for Dummies

If you’re searching for success doing the “Renegade” dance, stop.

A big gamble with social media is going viral. One day you can upload a cooking video and then the next day you’re making bank for your content. However, the chances are slim becoming an internet sensation. LinkedIn is the most efficient social media platform to land success.

LinkedIn has the power to get the dream job you have always wanted. The hunt for internships and jobs can be crucial during a pandemic. We are unable to attend career fairs and get our foot in the door. There is trust in the internet to get us where we want to be.

Getting Started

LinkedIn has the tools for anyone to represent themselves and meet professionals. You can start your free account by entering your email and name. I advise going by your government name if you feel comfortable. It would not be the best move to put “The Goat” as your name. It would be awful if a job recruiter addressed you as “The.”

Jobs are all about location. LinkedIn will ask you where you are from. It is helpful to see the opportunities around you. You can always filter locations if you are looking to relocate.

Who are you? - Professionally, of course.

The next step of creating your LinkedIn is telling the world all about you. There is an “About Me” section where you can personalize a message for everyone to see. It can be tricky to figure what you want to say. You can start by saying what is your major and your expected graduation date of your school. Then, you can write about the organizations or clubs you’re working with until graduation. It would be a good idea to write about your goals. What do you want to get out of this job hunt? You can also throw in some fun facts, you never know who you will run into on LinkedIn.

What do you currently do? LinkedIn will ask for your position, employment type, and company. There is no shame in putting in your job as a part-time Uber Eats delivery driver. You balance time management and provide customer service. Boom! Two great skills!

The beauty of LinkedIn is it’s a digital resume that does not limit you to one page. You are able to put all the experience you have. You can add skills and even take assessments to show you’re proficient at certain programs. Also, you can add your accomplishments regarding publications, certifications, courses you’ve taken, and awards. You can put anything you want on your LinkedIn that represents you. However, avoid linking your meme account or your YouTube playlists with Glee cast covers.

The Profile Picture

Yes, the profile picture gets its own heading. You want your profile picture to be professional. That does sound like the obvious thing to do, but your senior portrait from high school is not going to cut it. You probably look a bit different from senior year. You also do not want to crop your mom out from the spring wedding you went to. The pixelated photo of you with only one arm does not look that great.

You can look to see if your school offers professional headshot days. If not, it’s time to let out your inner Instagram baddie. You can ask a friend to take a picture of you against a clean background whether it is a plain wall or a pretty outdoor backdrop. Be sure the background is not busy. Your attire above the shoulders should be business casual.

Making Connections

LinkedIn is a community. It is important to connect with the people you know whether they are friends, classmates, or co-workers. In five years, you may not know who they will work for and if you want to be there too. You can also connect with your professors and bosses.

LinkedIn allows you to reach out to people in different industries. You should not just hit connect with an employer, to them you are a complete stranger. You can send them a personalized message about who you are and how’d you like to grow with the company. Be sure to be humble and get to the point. People are taking time out of their day to talk to you.

Another thing is people can see when you look at their account. I would avoid browsing at your crush’s LinkedIn at 2 am.

Don’t Be Shy to Post

Be active on LinkedIn. Don’t just let your profile sit and collect dust. You can share your thoughts on what’s going on in the industry. Now, do not bash a restaurant because they made your steak wrong. You can share articles you found compelling and relevant to the workplace. You can also share your latest projects and job updates with your connections.

The Job Hunt

As far as I’m concerned, job listings are no longer on page nine of the newspaper. LinkedIn is always updating job listings. You are able to filter jobs on positions, locations, and employment type. The key difference between LinkedIn and other job websites is that recruiters post their jobs themselves. It is likely you can find the recruiter and have a chat with them.

The job market is tough and competitive. However, if you have a strong LinkedIn presence, you have a greater chance of shining bright.


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