If you've been using LinkedIn for a while and you rely on it for your job search, to build your business, or just to build your network -- the end of December and early January might be a good time to give your profile its annual tune-up. (Thanks to members of the Twitter-based #LinkedInChat for several of these ideas. Join us on Tuesdays at 8:00 pm EST.)
Update your profile:
- If you haven't already done it, add the new skills tool.
- If you learned new skills this year, be sure to add them.
- Also add any training you received, awards or commendations.
- Update the links on your profile. If you haven't done it recently, check to make sure all your links work.
- If you are working and have changed roles, update your headlines accordingly.
- If you are looking for work, make sure your headlines reflect what you are currently looking for.
- Rearrange the parts of your profile to emphasize what's important to you and your goals.
Other tune-up ideas:
Review your groups. Are they providing you with leads or information, expanding your reach, or providing inspiration (or fun)? If not, drop those and add better ones. With a rumored 1million groups on LinkedIn, you should find some good ones for you.
Take some free time and add tags to your connections. (In Contacts, in the left column, find "Tags" and click on "Manage."
Add an app to show off your work samples:
- Box.net provides links to your uploaded sample files.
- Google Presentations and Slideshare can be used to show off whatever you do. It can be as simple as one-page with your business card or as sophisticated as embedding a video of yourself.
- If you blog, use the BlogLink or WordPress tool to show off your new blog posts.
If you already use Box.net or another site to share work samples, make sure your documents are up-to-date. You don't want stale material on your profile.
Check with your contacts and see if there is anyway you can help them.
If anybody on LinkedIn did you a good turn or gave you good service this past year, write them a recommendation.
If you are a veteran, go to the LinkedInlabs site and check out the new veterans apps.
If you are not a veteran, go to the LinkedInlabs site and check out the other experimental apps.
Consider writing one recommendation a week. It's a great way to pay it forward and you may get a few good recommendations back, too.
If you have other ideas for an annual check-up for your LinkedIn profile, please leave a comment describing it.
Now, please excuse me, I have to go to LinkedIn and start a tune-up.
Tags: LinkedIn, tune-up, profile, networking, job hunting