Are you LinkedIn correctly?

LinkedIn is a social networking site meant for professionals, but the student community too can reap several benefits from it. It is disheartening to see that the percentage of students on LinkedIn is comparatively lower than those on Facebook or Twitter. And those who do join aren't aware of the ways to connect effectively and use this excellent platform to their advantage. So here’s what students can do to establish a tangible online presence on LinkedIn.

1.LinkedIn is no Facebook: Always showcase yourself as a professional. Have a suitable email. Revealing too much personal information is not required. Your picture should also be a simple one (above shoulders) with clarity and a smile.
2. Profile matters: Don’t skip on the summary. Fill out all the essential details like – school, college, skills, activities, links to your blog etc. Also add any internship (paid or unpaid) or volunteer work experience. Highlight your role and include your skills.
3. Connect and Expand: Start connecting with people you already know – friends, family and professors. Then start expanding your circle by connecting with professionals. You’ll be surprised how many people want to connect with you.
4. Update: Always update your email id and phone number. An occasional question or status helps is getting attention too.
5. Contribute: You can join groups related to your school, college, majors and work interest. Don’t be afraid to take the plunge. A thoughtful perspective is always appreciated.
6. Get Recommended: It’s untrue that only employer recommendations matter. Request your professors or internship mentors to recommend you, but only if you are certain about your good performance.
7. Research: Set email alert for job recommendations and follow companies. The best feature of LinkedIn is that you can research companies, their target employers, and hiring processes. This will help you stay ahead of the crowd and increase your employability.

LinkedIn is a great way for students to present themselves professionally via the social media. If you prepare yourself as early as possible, then you can stay ahead of the competition in your search for internships during college and jobs after graduation. So, want to connect? Here’s the link to my LinkedIn account. Stay connected - the professional way!

Signing off,
Nitsy

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