Widen your circle of connections (and supporters) and you can shorten your job search dramatically.  Increase the number of recommendations and endorsements and you can take your profile to a whole new level.  With LinkedIn, it's easy for you to do.

Here are three facts regarding your connections and your profile: 
1.  The more connections you have, the more opportunities you have to communicate
       who you are and what you need.
2.  At least one person from your prospective employer's company will review your LinkedIn
      profile before making you a job offer.  If your prospective position is mid to high level, everyone
      who interviews you will have done so.  And so will everyone who is on your prospective team,
      every prospective peer, and (been there!) everyone who can see into the interview room.

3. If you are a consultant or contractor, any prospective client or customer will review your
     LinkedIn profile.  After all, today's LinkedIn profile is yesterday's list of references.

What does that mean?  In my opinion, if you want to find a job fast, you should have at least:
     *  300 LinkedIn connections
     *  2 recommendations for every skill you list in your resume summary or bio
     *  5 endorsements for every skill you list in your resume summary or bio
     *  (Inclusion in) 10 recruiter databases  

Before you tackle this list, if you haven't already, learn how to perform these LinkedIn tasks:
           - Locate possible connections
           - Connect with people
           - Exchange recommendations/endorsements
           - Ask for support from your connections
           - Locate recruiters
           - Solicit contact information from interviewers
           - Endorse people
1.  Someone currently or recently in the role or situation you seek
           Because they can tell you how they got there
2.   At least one person in each of your target companies
          Because you need someone to take your resume to HR

3.   Recruiters who work with candidates/companies in your industry/role
          Because you want them to have your resume on file

4.   Former work colleagues
          As they move to other ventures, they may be able to bring you along

5.   Everyone who can recommend or endorse you
          Their recommendations and endorsements will enrich your profile

6.   Everyone recommended by one of your current connections
          Anyone can give you a lead even if they don't know your industry or role

7.   Fellow LinkedIn group members
          See 6. above and because you already have something in common

8.   Every friend you make in every interview
          These people already know your industry, your role, and now, you

9.   Everyone you meet while networking
          See 6. above and because you can help each other

10. Everyone who offers to support you
          See 6. above and people who offer support want to help!

What I hope you got from this story: 
I want you to wake up every morning with something important to accomplish. If you are in a rut,
you'll be amazed at how you will energize your search. 

Take action: 
If you haven't already, learn how LinkedIn can help you get a job.

If you are short on connections, recommendations, endorsements, or recruiter lists, set a goal to meet these (bare minimum!) numbers within the next 48 hours.  Yes, 48 hours.  This is the Internet.  Things happen quickly. 

On that note, clear your calendar. You'll be busily writing personal notes to your new connections (which, if it's been a while, may involve a lot of catching up with each other and you can't rush these conversations), sharing resources with new connections, writing reciprocal recommendations, making endorsements, and fulfilling other promises to support others.  It's OK.  This is a far better reason to stay up til 2am then watching a late nite movie.

Note:  If you are currently employed and conducting a private job search, a flurry of LinkedIn activity could be construed as a sign that you are "job hunting".  In LinkedIn, click on your picture on the upper right of the screen to turn off your activity broadcasts so that your actions are not reported to all of your connections.  Be savvy about reaching out.  But do it.

Please share with someone who is looking for their ideal new job.



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