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Linked In – the Eggplant That Ate Chicago

What's a Rolodex?

I like Linked In. I think it has done a lot of things right and I appreciate all the forward thinking people who have created this terrific tool.

Everything in social media is changing all the time and while it makes it challenging for us to stay on top of those changes, it’s logical because there are financial, technological and practical reasons for the constant upheaval.

I am surprised by job seekers who know little about how the power of Linked In can help them in their job search. It continues to be the #1 tool I recommend for people looking to build their network contacts and find work. There are so many ways to use it to attract recruiters and hiring managers; particularly now that the job market is picking up. For more tips on using Linked In, check out this article, Ten Tips for Getting the Most Out of Linked In.

There are a few negatives in using Linked In that in no way outweigh the benefits. However, in recent months, these issues have become more problematic and if you are just starting with Linked In,  you may benefit from understanding these things.

  1. Large groups can be full of spam now. Don’t let this discourage you from using groups. They are a fantastic way to meet people. You may have to work a little harder to find groups that are just professionals talking to one another.
  2. I’ve noticed that some people are sending out unsolicited emails about events or their groups. When I replied to one person that it was spam, they started arguing with me. I said, “if it comes to my in box and I didn’t ask for it and I don’t want it it’s spam.” Period.
  3. I’ve noticed that when I look at the connections for one of my contacts, they are no longer in alphabetical order. This isn’t a big deal but…

Asking and answering questions, uploading presentations, looking for jobs and searching for contacts at key companies are all incredibly useful parts of Linked In.

Here’s my funny Linked In story. I was giving a talk at an entrepreneurial conference on social media. The crowd was great. As I left the venue, a young man stopped me and said, “I’m sorry I missed your talk on social media. Can you tell me about Linked In?”  I said, “Sure, it’s like an electronic Rolodex.”  He looked at me blankly and said, “What’s a Rolodex?”

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