LinkedIn: Social Networking for the Professional
There is debate as to whether LinkedIn actually counts as “social media” or not. In my humble opinion, it all depends on how you use it.
For those who merely post their resume or update their profile when they are in the job market, then no, it is not social media.
But there is another group of users who are maxing it out to its fullest potential. It is, as many who work in technology-conservative environments have discovered, not blocked at work as sites like Facebook are. Ergo, it is a way to connect and interact during the workday.
I manage two groups on LinkedIn. The first is an alumni group that has not yet taken advantage of the possibilities. But the other is a group of professionals from across the state who have very limited opportunities to connect and collaborate in their field.
This statewide group has moved beyond posting job openings and promoting events. The most recent outcome was a gathering of 27 coordinators and directors from the southern part of the state coming together to talk about programming and engagement of seniors and baby boomers in their programs. It started with one person posting a question to the group and a snowball of responses meant a hot topic had appeared.
This group of people had a meaningful conversation, shared great ideas and examples from their various programs, and left with the commitment to meet again, several times each year.
So while you probably don’t want to talk about what you ate for breakfast or post photos of your grandkids on LinkedIn, it is a great way to network professionally. And because few, if any, employers have blocked it, it is accessible to a larger professional audience during the workday.
So link up people!