Sunday, November 29, 2020

Networking made easy with LinkedIn

Are you motivated and creative with extensive experience in your field?

According to a blog post written by Catherine Fisher, LinkedIn’s career expert, so is everyone else.

LinkedIn recently revealed the top 10 overused buzzwords featured in profiles in 2014. In order, the most commonly used words are: motivated, passionate, creative, driven, extensive experience, responsible, strategic, track record, organizational and expert.

“The problem with these words are they’re boring,” Julia Overton-Healy, director of the campus’ Career Development Center said. “Everyone uses them.”

According to Fisher’s blog post, titled “Brand YOU Year: How to Brand Yourself Without Sounding Like Everyone Else,” don’t replace these overused words with similar adjectives. Rather, use examples to show how you are motivated or creative.

LinkedIn allows its users to upload examples of their work to highlight their talents and accomplishments.

Overton-Healy said LinkedIn should not be used to simply post a resume. It’s a way to brand yourself and network with potential employers.

Rather than simply posting a resume to a LinkedIn account, it is important to add professional experience as well as volunteer experience.

Fisher’s blog states that 41 percent of professionals surveyed by LinkedIn said they consider volunteer work equally important as paid experience.

A strategic approach when using LinkedIn is ultimately what is going to be effective, Overton-Healy said.

“You need to add the things that make you different,” she said. “Include what makes you unique and what you bring that would add value to a company.”

It is also important to connect with other LinkedIn users and not just personal heroes or people who seem to be cool, Overton-Healy said.

“It helps to build alliances with people so you are able to hear about opportunities,” she said. “Start with Plattsburgh alum and ask for connections from there.”

Overton-Healy also posted a blog entry on LinkedIn titled “So’s a Golden Retriever,” which compares LinkedIn users to breeds of dog, the majority being Golden Retrievers.

She states how important it is to “gain knowledge and skills beyond the expected.” For example, rather than just learning PowerPoint, students should learn Prezi too. Include if you are proficient with certain style guides like MLA or APA.

Though the Goldens are a great breed, no employer needs a whole team of them so add that special something that you bring, she said.

The Career Development Center is also willing to help students work on and better their LinkedIn accounts.

Email Tawnee Bradham at tawnee.bradham@cardinalpointsonline.com.

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