Source: American Bar Association
One of my important tips I pass along to job seekers is to create and maintain a robust LinkedIn profile. This advice is often met with a big sigh or an eye roll.
Yes, I know, another social media account to maintain. Hear me out: Whether you're new in the marketplace or have an established career, LinkedIn is a tremendously easy way to promote yourself—and to passively look for a job.
For starters, a LinkedIn profile is quick to create and a simple step to take to gain visibility beyond your immediate network. If you're looking for a job, or anticipate beginning a job search at any point in the future, maintaining a thorough and detailed LinkedIn profile will help. It can help potential employers access information about your background and experience. It also enables recruiters like me to find you when we are looking for candidates—and we really enjoy when we can identify great candidates because they have taken the time to complete (and update) their profiles!
LinkedIn also provides a low-pressure way to network. The convenient messaging feature lets you connect with people that you know and may want to know professionally. A quick message to set up a coffee with a former colleague is a great way to reconnect and start a conversation.
Moreover, perusing the networks of your connections will give you some additional ideas of people you may like to meet. It's also really easy to turn a "cold call" into a warm one by finding something or someone you have in common with another person and sending a personal note, focusing on the commonality. This is a very effective way to connect with a friend of a friend and broaden your network.
LinkedIn is a great tool for you in your job search, and we would love to help polish yours to make sure you're showing off the skills and experience that make you most attractive to employers and connections. If you're in Chicago, come meet me and my colleague Judene Hylton at the Minority In-House Counsel Association (MIHCA) conference on October 24. We are offering resume and LinkedIn review as a part of the program, and we'd love to meet you.
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This article was originally featured on American Bar Association for Law Students "Before the Bar" Blog, October 18, 2017.
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Amanda Ziemann is a Director in Major, Lindsey & Africa's Chicago office where she specializes in placing attorneys in corporate legal departments in a wide range of industries in a variety of locations. Prior to joining Major, Lindsey & Africa, Amanda was a trial attorney in both the public and private sector. She began her career litigating a variety of personal injury cases, and moved on to handle the subrogation department at a national creditor's rights firm. Most recently, Amanda was an Assistant Attorney General for the State of Illinois in the Tort Unit.