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networking

Career

Five Tips for College Students on Using LinkedIn

November 13, 2020

One of the biggest myths about college is the belief that a degree can guarantee you will have a successful career. But the truth is, you can graduate with flying colors and still struggle to find a job if you don’t prepare for what’s ahead.

Building a career takes planning and many careful steps along the way. One of the things that you can do to start preparing for a future great career is to slowly build your professional brand on LinkedIn while you are still in college.

How College Students Can Benefit from Using LinkedIn

LinkedIn is such a powerful tool that if you are going to choose just one online profile, it should be on this platform. According to the platform, over 200,000 students join every month, and this impressive figure tells you that these students are on to something.

The benefits of using LinkedIn go beyond making connections and creating an online presence. Your profile is like a live resume that does much of the networking for you. Aside from these perks, here are some of the other features that students can utilize from LinkedIn:

Job Alerts

Whether you are looking for a part-time job, internship, or simply want to be in the know on who is hiring at the moment, you can set up job alerts on LinkedIn and be notified of new open positions in your industry.

Company Research

Learning more about an organization can easily be done on the platform. This gives you a peek into what is new in the industry, typical hiring processes, and even company reviews.

Professional Connections

Connecting with industry experts who can be a potential mentor for you is easily done. Since LinkedIn is a professional networking site, you can quickly connect with business leaders and professionals from whom you can learn.

How to Use LinkedIn for Career Preparation

If you are new to LinkedIn or do not have an account yet, here are 5 things that you can start working on to make LinkedIn work to your advantage.

Complete Your Profile

While not a LinkedIn requirement, completing your profile can give you a better online job search experience. You can receive targeted job recommendations based on the education and list of interests you placed on your profile. This helps you save time and you only get job recommendations that are relevant to you.

Upload your Online Resume

Uploading your resume on LinkedIn helps increase your employability level as this step makes it easier for recruiters to see if you would be a good fit. It’s important to take the time to know how to add your resume to LinkedIn.

Join your University Alumni Group

Connecting with your alma mater’s network allows you to form relationships with fellow students and college alumni so you can stay updated on where they have gotten job offers. You can also check with the alumni to determine if any of their companies are hiring and request a reference. Aside from staying in touch, these connections can greatly leverage your professional network.

Get and Give Recommendations

Try to get LinkedIn recommendations from mentors, fellow students, and even from your teachers. These serve as virtual references from other people in the industry and can help strengthen your profile. The more recommendations that you get, will show that more people find you credible and trustworthy in your chosen field. Don’t forget to reciprocate and give others recommendations as well.

Update Your Profile Regularly

Since your LinkedIn account will continue to work to your advantage so make sure to update your profile often with recent training, certifications, and awards.

LinkedIn is a great platform for college students to help them create a blueprint for a successful career. Like any tool, you need to put in effort for it to generate visible results, and preparation is essential. This is where you will see what one is willing to do to set himself apart and how far he is willing to go to achieve his goals. 

About the Author: Amanda Morris is a writer and a contributor. Her works are specifically geared towards providing information for students that can help them with their fields and their journey to career development.

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5 Networking Tips for Recent College Grads

March 26, 2019

Networking can be unnerving for recent college graduates and new professionals, but it’s essential in landing a new job and career growth in the future.

It’s estimated that at least 70 percent of available jobs are never listed online. Attending industry events, conferences, and other networking opportunities is a great way to get your name out there and discover jobs that aren’t posted on online job boards.

With that in mind, here are five tips for recent college grads to network like pros in any networking situation.

Carry Yourself Confidently

Having confidence is easier said than done, especially in an unfamiliar situation. The best advice to appear confident when you aren’t is to “fake it till you make it”. You can give the appearance of confidence by being conscious of your body language. Studies have shown that those who stand in “power poses” command more attention, suffer less stress, and benefit from improved performance. Make sure to stand with good posture, keep a smile on your face, and nail down the perfect handshake in order to impress a prospective connection.

Appearance Matters

Many people subconsciously correlate appearance with competence in other areas.  This makes it essential to have a well-rounded professional image. How you appear and what you wear can embolden you to feel more confident and improve the way you interface with others.

Paying attention to little grooming details prior to a networking event can give you an added polish and confidence boost. You can utilize a variety of effective beauty solutions to manage hair loss, smooth out your complexion, and whiten your smile. For sustainable improvements in your appearance, make sure to practice regular self-care by exercising regularly, sticking to a sleep schedule, and keeping a balanced diet.

When considering an outfit, you should always match the dress code of the event you’re attending. However, if the dress code is unclear, you should dress to fit the role of the position you’re aiming for. Looking the part doesn’t just impress your potential connections, it enables you to act the part as well.

Actively Engage

Everyone likes to talk about themselves. After introducing yourself, actively engage with your new connection and ask them about their experiences within the industry. Stay present in the conversation without checking your phone, speaking over them, or scoping out the event for who you want to talk to next. Demonstrating your interest in the work they’re doing makes them feel important while showing them your passion for the industry.

Look For Mutual Interests

Finding common ground and mutual interests can solidify a memorable conversation. You don’t want to go off topic without reason, as it can make you seem like you’re not serious about your industry. However, if a conversation is going well, don’t be afraid to test the waters around more personal topics, such as a favorite sports team, television show, or recent movie.

Exchange Contact Information

After a good conversation, you should always remember to get your new connection’s contact information to follow up after the event. This way, you can continue to build on your new professional relationship. Offer your own contact information and/or business card as well.

These tips are sure to get you noticed and remembered at your next networking event! Don’t forget to follow GradGuard on social media if you enjoy posts like this one.