Ever since I paid for a Premium Membership, I’ve been able to access more data about more people than before. Now, whenever I have good rapport with someone, I look them up on LinkedIn. If they’re on here, I browse through their profile just to get to know them better. Maybe we graduated from the same university. Maybe they and I have someone in common. Maybe we’re both looking for work.
I look at LinkedIn the way I look at Facebook, even though LinkedIn was made for professional connections, and Facebook for personal. While it might seem odd to people that I might connect with people I’ve never worked with, or that I’ve only had one professional conversation with, I do it because opportunity can come from the most unlikely of places.
Social media is designed for people to search other people. The sheer number of fields to fill out allows that search to far more extensive than what’s on a resume. It can be overloading, but when that recruiter is searching for a video editor, I could be included in their search and contacted about an opportunity. Perhaps your next employer does a search for people living in a certain area, and sees that you graduated from the same university – it may prompt them to consider your first.
It’s also very intriguing how many people become naturally curious about your work and career once you have that good relationship or rapport . While not all professional contacts will stay abreast on everything, sometimes when you see a person’s name pop up with a new job, relocation, or a new talent, your reaction might be, “Oh wow, he did get certified in X like he spoke of,” or “He always talked about moving to Texas…”
It could also be the case that connections share some great insight with you via articles or commentary. Your connection might be the real estate agent who sells you your house; you announce on here that you’re considering a relocation to another city, that agent might introduce you via InMail to a few realtors in the area.
One of my professional goals in life going forward is to encourage more people to get on LinkedIn. My reach isn’t nearly as wide or expansive as others I know, but “Rome wasn’t built in a day.” Not all are LinkedIn savvy, and not all dive into some of the depths of social media that I do, and not everyone thinks to make these connections, but as time goes on, I’m trying to educate more people to do these things.