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How you should be using LinkedIn

job search advice linked networking reputation Mar 21, 2023


Are you making the most of LinkedIn? Far too often, people ignore the site's best features, treating it only like a glorified job board. In fact, using LinkedIn the right way can enhance your whole career.

Here's how I like to break down how to use your time on the platform.

Job searching: 25%

Interestingly enough, direct job searching should only be 25% of your efforts. Job searching covers everything from finding job postings to researching companies to find key managers.


Be sure to explore LinkedIn's job searching tools, such as saved searches, saved jobs, keyword matching, salary comparisons, and InMails to recruiters. Just remember some of these are only available with a Premium account.


Networking: 45%

Networking really is the whole point of LinkedIn. The platform was designed as a social network, after all.

Specifically, networking includes getting involved in groups, contacting people directly, and hunting down hiring managers and decision-makers.


Reputation building: 20%

Reputation impacts your networking efforts and your job search on many levels. So, 20% of your time should be devoted to building your reputation.

What does that mean?


Every action you take on LinkedIn will impact your reputation. This includes writing articles, sharing content, or developing insightful posts. Similarly, you could write supportive comments on other people's posts. All of those actions help build your reputation as a thought leader and insightful professional, especially if you pay attention to the developments in your industry.


Negative reputation problems


Conversely, if you're doing things that are not so smart, that also will work against you.


I'll give you a quick example.

I saw this unfortunate situation in one of our niche groups for the private service industry. Luxury services are already a tight-knit community, so reputation is everything.


Unfortunately, one particular person was having a rough go with their job search. So, out of pure frustration, they decided to vent their opinion that recruiters were awful, especially because they would not give them a chance.


If you are cringing right now, that is the right response.


To make matters worse, they did this in a LinkedIn group that had tons of recruiters in it, specifically for the niche market. Obviously, attacking the people who could connect them with a job was probably the worst thing they could do. The whole post was just dripping poison, bitterness, and frustration in every word.

Some of us even tried to warn the job seeker that they needed to remove the post. I know I sent them a private message, specifically pointing out the number of recruiters in the group. Unfortunately, rather than being grateful for the warnings and removing the post, they responded with more poison. In their minds, the recruiters needed to be called out in a public forum.


While that might have felt momentarily satisfying to them, such negativity only generates negative results.

Professional development: 10%

When I mention professional development, most people think of LinkedIn Learning. Of course, these video-based courses are a great resource to expand your skills. However, there are other professional development opportunities on the site.


Specifically, pay attention to the content generated by your peers, industry thought leaders, and connections. It is a fabulous way to spot developing trends, tools, and resources.


For example, one of my connections recently shared a salary analysis report from Morgan Stanley, specifically for estate managers and others in the private service industry. The report is a game-changer for job seekers in this niche market and those who need accurate, statistical data to compare their compensation to industry standards. As a niche market, it has been notoriously difficult to obtain reports that closely examine salary comparisons across the US.


We will use this resource heavily to coach our clients through their salary negotiations.


If I had not been paying attention to my news feed on LinkedIn, I might have missed this valuable – and game-changing – resource.


Total time commitment

With all these activities, you may feel overwhelmed with your new tasks on LinkedIn. Fortunately, even committing only 20-30 minutes a day on LinkedIn can seriously impact your career. Choose your activities wisely – there is so much beyond the job board!


Need some more guidance on how to use LinkedIn?

Check out our class "LinkedIn Secrets for Job Seekers."

Use the code LI50 to get 50% off!

Wondering how effective your job search is? Schedule a complimentary 30-minute consultation with one of our career coaches, Donna Shannon or Dia Kline

Schedule a Consultation

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