27 Oct How I Used LinkedIN to get Two Job Offers in 45 Days
A great post from one of our guest bloggers, Donna Jacobites!
1 The Back Story
My position was eliminated due to a company acquisition on July 31, 2015. Feeling emotionally exhausted, yet knowing I had until Thanksgiving to secure my next place of employment, I decided to take the month of August off. Great decision. I recharged my batteries! On Sunday night, August 30th, a wave of FOMO (Fear of Missing Out) hit me so I started looking on LinkedIN Jobs to see what jobs were listed. Here it is, October 13th and two jobs I noticed that night have turned into offers.
Here’s how I did it:
2 Put My Marketing Materials together
Made sure my tools were in place: Resume, LinkedIN Profile and Professional References. My former company provided outplacement services, so after attending a seminar on “LinkedIN Tips” I updated my profile to include more projects and links, updated my background (to brand myself) and added the LinkedIN badge to my email signature block.
Tip: LinkedIN is a way to BRAND yourself. I picked the background of file folders because it is colorful as I’ve been described as “joyous” and “spirited” and it implies organization (albeit, the humble form of paper organization).
Tip: LinkedIN has added an easy way to highlight media such as documents, photos, links, video or presentations. Add your projects that show the well-rounded person you are!
3 Worked on my Self-Esteem
As an avid Liz Ryan follower (Linked Influencer) I came across a post that was life-changing:
This article resonated with me so I decided to not “play small” and to not be so picky about applying to opportunities. I highly recommend reading her blog!
Tip: LinkedIN has designated approximately 500 professionals who’ve been invited to publish on LinkedIn. As leaders in their industries, geographies, and seniority, they discuss topics of interest, such as leadership, management, hiring and firing, disruption, and how to succeed. May 4, 2015
4 Applied my “Lazy Clicking” method
The challenge I set for myself that Sunday night was to apply to any and everything I saw that was reasonable. This got tiring, so I used the “save” feature to save a job and go back and apply at a later date. Then I realized that when the job poster is listed, I would simply click on the profile of the poster (I didn’t have the Premium Account to InMail them) and I would bet on human nature to be curious to see who was reviewing their profile. This WORKED! Within 3 days, I received an email from the job poster ASKING me to apply for the position and stating upfront that she wanted to discuss the position in more detail with me.
Tip: Contact the job poster whenever they are listed. (Below is a random example)
That same night, I applied to a position that was listed by a recruiting agency. After a phone screen and in-person interview, it was determined that the job was not a good fit for me. However, the agency had another position they were working on and submitted me for consideration! After one phone screen and two in-person visits, I was offered the position!
Tip: LinkedIN shows all the jobs to which you applied. I suggest printing out the job description (or saving as .pdf) because once the job closes, you may still receive a call to interview for it but you will not be able to view the job description any longer. This saves the embarrassment of asking the caller to send you the job description!
5 Other Tips and Tricks
Apply to a job and get your resume in the “black hole”. 3-5 days later, contact someone at the company letting them know you’ve applied and that you would appreciate their assistance in getting your resume in front of human resources or the hiring manager. If you have a 2nd degree contact at the company, ask that person to virtually introduce you to their connection.
Before your interview, research everyone with whom you will be meeting on LinkedIN. You never know what commonality you will find. I was able to say to a hiring manager: “I noticed that all the senior executives at this company have been independent consultants at some point in their careers.” This blew the manager away. Don’t work too hard at this, but doing your homework will definitely help! I also happened to notice that another hiring manager graduated in the same law school class as a friend of mine. I never had to use that point, as he was more interested in chatting about the comfortable shoes my former company produced. (He had done his homework, too.)
Keep conversations going through InMail with your first degree contacts. I have conversations dating back 2 years with former colleagues. Periodically, we just touch base. One former colleague and I get together about once every 2 years for breakfast – it doesn’t take much!
Your best connections will be your former peers who DO THE SAME JOB as you. It seems counter-intuitive, but my best leads came from former colleagues and co-workers in the same field. It makes sense because they are aware of job openings (that they don’t want or can’t take).
Your best mentors will be people who are currently in a job search or who have recently completed their job search. The reason for this is that they feel your pain. I had a former colleague say to me: “I expect you to reach out to me if I can help in any way!”
Join groups! This allows you the opportunity to InMail anyone in the same group, and to post to that group to gain industry recognition.
Sign up for a PREMIUM account. First time is free for a month and then you’re charged monthly (approximately $30). This allows you a certain number of InMails you can directly send to a hiring manager or someone at your targeted company (without having to be introduced!).
Help others job hunt. True Story: A VP of Sales was targeting my parent company as a place of employment. He was at an in-person job networking event and asked everyone in the group if they knew someone at XYZ company. A former colleague remembered that I was working at company XYZ so he virtually introduced us through LinkedIN. I responded, took the call, answered his questions, presented his resume to HR and 8 months later received an email from the candidate telling me he wanted to treat me to lunch because today was his first day at company XYZ! The amazing thing here is that there was no job for him – he was applying to the COMPANY and created his own job!!!
Get a professional picture taken. I’m on my third professional picture in about 10 years. Always by the same photographer: Nicole Connolly of Photo Fabulous You http://www.photofabulousyou.com/
Get references from 2-6 former colleagues soon after you leave a job. Others want to assist you in your job search and are happy to say positive things about your past contribution. Know that you can edit these comments, send back to the author for re-submission, and choose to post or not on your page. The added benefit to getting a few recommendations is the ego boost (at exactly the time you need it most!)
Bottom line, keep active on LinkedIN. Even when you’re happy in your position. It is a great tool to keep in contact with former colleagues and current group members.