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Continuing with the topic of Jumpstarting a second career, let’s consider searching on LinkedIn and describe how experienced professionals should be leveraging it to jumpstart their careers – if they’re switching, or even if they’re staying put in the same field.

Yes, even if you’re in the very same career you started in, you can use LinkedIn to enhance your stature, effectiveness, and probably even your pay.

Let’s have a  look at searching and using it to build your career.

What I said

The earlier article had this to say about search for those starting a second career:

And this is why you want to re-connect with every possible individual in the old career.

They know people.

Both inside and outside the old industry.

And when you want to find someone that can help you with the new career, you’ll perform some advanced searches on LinkedIn to find them.

Because you’ve got connections to all of the people you’ve worked with, you have a natural resource – their connectivity.

The rationale

How many people have you connected with on LinkedIn? Earlier I reminded you about the connection rule – that you needed to know and trust each. So these are people you should be able to count on, right?

Let’s say it’s not so many, 30-60 – that’s a good start in any case. I expect that if you’ve been around for a while you should be able to connect to 120-180 people.

Who do they know?

Who do they trust?

Are any of the people they know in a position to help you?

You probably have no idea – it’s not something you generally go around talking about – but it is important.

And that’s where LinkedIn comes in.

Building off success

LinkedIn knows, and that’s the important part.

One way to find out – is to look at your connections’ connections. Sure – just click into one of your connections, and see who they connect to. Unless your connection has turned off this ability, his or her connections should be visible. (for more on the topic of making your connections visible, read “A Matter of Trust“)

But looking through the thousands of connections of your hundreds of contacts could take a while – and you might just miss things…

Advanced Search

And this is where LinkedIn shines – every user gets the ability to search the 120 million plus database.

Don’t fool around – take my advice and use the advanced search – click on the word advanced to the right of the search box.

What do you need?

  • Employer – search on the terms related to your personal brand to see where it resonates well. Find the person you’d be working for.
  • Sale – search on terms related to your perfect customer.
  • Advice – search on terms related to the topic you need advice on.

LinkedIn will tell you who fits those terms.

But wait, there’s more!

LinkedIn will also tell you who you know that knows these people…

Any questions?

That’s why LinkedIn is essential for restarting your career.

And it is a reasonably safe environment to share this sort of data because you know who gets direct contact? The people you know and trust – the ones you connect to. Everybody else can only get to you through an introduction or an InMail.

And guess what – the next topic we’ll cover is introductions – so stay tuned.

If this seems like a great nugget of advice but you’re left with a need to understand LinkedIn from beginning to end in one concise read, try “The LinkedIn Personal Trainer“. It’s perfect for the newcomer, and you have my guarantee that it will get you going with LinkedIn or I’ll refund the e-book purchase price – which isn’t all that much to begin with.

If you have a single question on the topic of searching, leave it here as a comment and we’ll look at it together.

Next up – as I said – introductions.

To your continued success,

steve

Steven Tylock
http://www.linkedinpersonaltrainer.com
http://www.linkedin.com/in/stevetylock