What is LinkedIn ? Three ways to answer the same question.
Personally I think I knew I had to be on there from a professional point of view but I failed to ever spend enough time working out what it was all about and how to make best use of it, is that you too ?
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My three ways to answer the same question is based on three perspectives.
I think the answer depends on who you are as far as your working professional life is concerned.
What ever your answer is, this defines how you could benefit from LinkedIn .
If you are going to effective on LinkedIn and avoid wasting time then it is an important question for you to answer.
What is LinkedIn ? The easy answer
Wikipedia does a great job of the simple answer and says "The purpose of the site is to allow registered users to maintain a list of contact details of people they know and trust in business."
LinkedIn used to have their Mission Statement on their website, I failed to find it now but it is in module 1 of Effective LinkedIn: Starter, my free LinkedIn training course, and it says"To connect the world's professionals to make them more productive and successful."
What is LinkedIn ? If I am a professional employee looking to manage my career.
We got the bit about managing trusted connections right ? That is a great start, but as a professional employee their is so much more if you want to manage your career.
Career management is different to looking for a job. It happens before you want the job, so it's an investment in your future and your present. Making connections within your profession, industry, and location is all important to that but so is your reputation.
Your reputation, credibility and trust within LinkedIn is built on the actions you take on the platform; the questions you ask, the answers you give and groups and discussions you take an active role in.
So for the professional employee looking to manage their career LinkedIn is about helping people by using your expertise and knowledge.
It takes a bit of practice to learn how to do this in the shortest possible time with the greatest impact; these are Advanced LinkedIn techniques.
What is LinkedIn? If I am a business owner.
To answer the question from this perspective we can build on the professional employees perspective.
Most business owners are also professional employees with their "other hat on" so LinkedIn is still a place to manage trusted connections and use expertise and knowledge to manage credibility, trust and reputation.
To extend the perspective further as a business owner we could look at sales.
LinkedIn is about making sales right ?
Er, no. Sorry. Stop right there. LinkedIn is about connections, expertise, credibility, trust, reputation and relationships.
And you sell with relationships.
So build relationships on LinkedIn and sell away from the platform.
LinkedIn is about your company reputation if your the business owner in addition to your personal reputation.
So you can manage your personal professional reputation by taking the appropriate actions, but at the same time you need to keep an eye on your company reputation.
Remember that any employee at your company can add your company profile to LinkedIn, so if your going to miss that opportunity someone else will do it.
As a business owner I humbly suggest you manage this actively, and look after your company reputation. We go through this in detail on the Effective LinkedIn: Advanced course. There is so much that business owners can now do on LinkedIn to manage the company reputation and build relationships between people and the company.
That may also mean encouraging your professional employees to be on LinkedIn and active and knowing exactly how to use it.
Why ? Simply that during the time they work for you every action they take can lead back to you and your company, so it is best that they know what they are doing right ? Instead of worrying about what your employees may say about you and your company, teach them what to do that is positive and rewarding for both you and them.
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Inspirations For This Post
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Posted in Food Post Date 03/27/2017