On June 4, 2019, I attended a LinkedIn workshop by 2Actify offered by Rutgers iJOBS. This workshop was focused on helping design a LinkedIn profile, by making it more attractive with the necessary information for recruiters. The 2Actify program was founded by Penny Pearl, a Rutgers’ alum, dedicated to helping others prepare for their future.
Job searching can be very stressful and time-consuming. When seeking a job, you might encounter several challenges such as not knowing where to start, who to approach, or even figuring out the right words to use in your application. The 2Actify workshop emphasized that the job search is a step-by-step process composed of the 3-C’s: Collateral, Connections, and Conversations.
- Collateral: Build your profile
- Connections: Network and create relationships
- Conversations: Start conversations with your connections that could potentially help you find a job
The 2Actify workshop was divided into two parts:
- How to make a magnetic and focused LinkedIn profile
- How to find a job through referrals
With Penny’s help, attendees went through the important parts of a LinkedIn profile that should make it more eye catching. First, your profile will need to be visually attractive. Penny advised that having an adequate picture of yourself, such as a headshot, is important. Also, LinkedIn gives you the option to have a cover image. This image should reflect who you are as a professional. Second, make sure to adjust these 3-key settings within your profile page:
1) Turn OFF the “Notify your network” button. This way every time you make a change to your profile your whole network will not be notified. Unless is something important that you really want to put out there.
2) Make your profile visible. The popular opinion is to have a private account, so that only people you know personally would approach you. However, this is not helpful if you want recruiters to look at your profile! Often, recruiters will simply look at profiles that match a certain skill set they have in mind. So, if you are job hunting, having visible profile is the best option.
3) Get notified by email when you have received a message. This way you can be more aware if anyone that tries contact with you.
Penny also discussed key sections in your profile that a recruiter would definitely look at.
- Tag Card and Headline: What you do and who you do it for.
- Summary or “About”: This section would be outcome based. Let them know how you would respond in different situations, and what makes you the best candidate. You should use first person when writing, use easy scan categories, and describe your skills using key words.
- Experience: Here is where you lay out all the experiences you have had in similar job markets.
- Accomplishments: This section will allow recruiters to see how your accomplishments have helped you and the people you have worked for succeed and look good.
- Recommendations: Penny advises to have at least 5 references. You can ask people to talk about one of your most outstanding skills.
Be active in your profile. Share articles you have written or read, and share at least one article a week. If you aren’t in the habit of doing so, you should start scheduling to read and share articles on your profile. This will help you to get more connections, which eventually can become referrals. It is better when you are referred to a job as this shows loyalty and confidence to the recruiters.
The 2Actify workshop is more than a 2-hour workshop, it is a whole program! If you are interested in this program you can access more info at https://2actify.com/.
Hopefully following these tips will make the career searching process less stressful and time-consuming!
This article was edited by Eileen Oni and Monal Mehta.