Ever been pleasantly surprised when something came out of the blue to reward and/or compliment you?
You know that feeling-“wow, that was really kind!”
Unfortunately in our busy lives it doesn’t happen that often because we get distracted.
Well, I say, try to remember to give someone an unsolicited recommendation on LinkedIn when they do some thing so over-the-top-great for you that you want them to get that warm feeling of “wow.”
Follow these steps:
You view their LinkedIn profile and to the lower right of their headshot, click the downward pointing arrow in the blue button and choose “Recommend.”
Follow steps 1 and 2 in the next screen you see, composing the recommendation and sending a cover note to the person. In each, but especially in the recommendation itself, tell a story to frame the context and the above-the-top effort and results.
Complete the second section choosing how you know that person and your positions at that time. Recommendations do not only have to cover the present.
The recommendation and cover note go to the person’s LinkedIn mail and email address and they can either choose to publish it to their profile or ask you to amend it in some way. In either situation they will always remember you for doing this!
Think and give: a random act of LinkedIn kindness!
As mentioned here before, you probably already produce slides and decks for presentations, and you can share this material with the LinkedIn community via SlideShare.
Today LinkedIn SlideShare (its new name; owned by and integrated into LinkedIn) announced a new enhancement: you can select “Clippings” from others’ SlideShare entries and add to a Clipboard.
As they say, “With Clipping, research is made easier, and Clipboards are a handy way to keep everything organized by topic. You can also share an individual slide or an entire Clipboard with your networks.”
In some ways this is great news and will expand the reach of your brand, provided:
You use SlideShare (and very few of my connections and colleagues do) and
You properly protect yourself with a copyright indicating this as your intellectual property. I do this at the bottom of EVERY slide I produce, such as this title slide from a session I held last month for Gotham City Networking’s Bandit group:
Use it wisely and with copyright protection to mark it as yours, despite how easily it can be spread using SlideShare.
There is no worse experience than seeing your original material used by someone else out of context or without permission.
I am so pleased a colleague and friend has firmly become a thought leader in her field. She remarked the other day to me that she lands new exciting writing spots on well-known blogs from her social media activity. People find her, they offer her opportunities.
The same can happen to you too.
But you have to contribute. Regularly. With high quality.
You have a few ways to demonstrate your thought leadership on LinkedIn:
by telling why and how you do what you do in your personal profile and company profile, if applicable; (BTW, the link above is really good!)
by answering questions and raising open-ended questions in LinkedIn groups
by sharing great materials you read online so you can be a relied-upon source of quality material others can share to their connections; share with individual(s), specific LinkedIn groups, or all your connections on LinkedIn
by authoring fresh new material that is top-of-mind to you (LinkedIn Posts), and sending it to LinkedIn, so others can opine and benefit from your thoughts
The topics, the commentary, the situations, the hunger for the benefit of your opinion and experience is boundless on LinkedIn.
Taking the time to pitch a news and ideas, a concept, an observation or “what I learned from…” enriches us all and adds to the mix of business professionalism, the global venue that LinkedIn provides you access.
Don’t feel you are a thought leader?
You won’t know if you are (or if you are not) unless you throw something worthy out there.
Do it. Regularly. With high quality.
Note: starting today I am experimenting with embedding audio files of my reading you the blog post…multitask away! Please let me know if you find this is of any value.
We have spring cleaning as a concept. Not sure why you let the winter accumulate “gunk” (a technical term!) only to clean it once in the spring.
I propose year-end-focussed renovation now and all year-long.
Didn’t start yet? No problem.
Think forward. Not just for today or next week, but over the coming 4 months in advance.
If you hesitated to start a process, start now. Nip away at the small pieces, start with the low hanging fruit.
Once you pick up momentum, start to increase your sights, higher, higher.
Yes, as a LinkedIn coach my job/duty is to motivate clients to achieve that which they cannot/don’t want to/can’t believe they can do themselves. With a mostly objective eye.
And I do become personally interested in their futures:
the CEO who just accepted a new stimulating position, pending funding; with another CEO position in the offing if needed
the teacher helping special needs kids he developed over decades of experience with his unique POV
the author who is striking out on his own to help himself and others publish books in a fractured industry
These are just 3 of my recent clients who couldn’t get past themselves. Great verbal story to tell, boring resume-ish LinkedIn profiles; together worked methodically to achieve more. I am amazed at what my clients can, and ultimately, do, accomplish to tell their “why I do what I do” story on LinkedIn.
One grape at a time.
Starting now, where do you want to go over the next 4 months until year-end?
Oh my. Such a quandary. A recent article posed an answer to the question of how formal your clothes should be in your LinkedIn headshot. I will paraphrase its conclusions:
“However, for your LinkedIn profile, if you are looking for a job at a hyper-growth startup in Silicon Valley, I recommend business casual dress for men and women.”
The context of the article was for job seekers. This is not Silicon Valley. What about the rest of us? That got me thinking. So I’ll go further with this topic.
Did you know that every headshot has 4 different versions that appear on LinkedIn? For example, mine, with the 3 additional different photos below, is used in other sections of LinkedIn (you have no control beyond what larger headshot you upload).
So word to wise men and women, make your headshot shoulder-to-top-of-head so the 3 smaller ones remain large enough to make your face easily seen.
That digression leads me back to the issue of what to wear. If you follow my advice, the concern over wearing a suit or business casual attire means very little if the bottom of your headshot is shoulder-level. The viewer is thus looking at your face, not at how formal an outfit you wore. There, easy fix. No more worry about formal or not.
Last year in my most recent headshot, I chose to wear a tie and blazer as a compromise between biz-caz and a suit. I dress either way when I speak to groups or to a company and always ask the person who hires me what is appropriate. If in doubt, as my wife counsels me, dress in a suit.
BTW, I suggest against a white shirt since headshots these days use a white background for LinkedIn headshots. In a white shirt you will appear to be floating, so that’s not a good idea. Stay away from fine stripes that can make us dizzy on TV and in low res photos.
Great photographers provide guidance how to dress ahead of the photo shoot. One such is my colleague, photographer, and best of all, friend Brett Deutsch in NYC who provides excellent advice on his website.
I see it. You see it. But should we pay attention to LinkedIn Lookup?
LinkedIn Lookup is a new iPhone app (no Android yet) that allows you to see the keyword details within your coworkers’ LinkedIn profiles.
Do we need this? Is it any different from using the search function properly?
Oh it just came to me: since the search function on the smartphone version of LinkedIn is so wonky, this gets you around the problem of performing an effective search on your handheld device.
C’mon LinkedIn, I would have preferred you fixed the smartphone apps on iPhone and Android and the rest and made then work EXACTLY like the LinkedIn desktop version. That would be a better use of time and skills.
And make us want to use LinkedIn more when we are out and about.
Everyone has a self-perception. But it is not always accurate. Or may be stuck in a time warp. Or not always well-presented.
“Does my voice really sound like that on a recording?” “That photo doesn’t really look like me!” “If that’s what you understood, I must not have been clear.”
I say: re-read your personal LinkedIn profiles from the POV of your reader. Now, out loud.
Same for your company profile on LinkedIn. Can you say the same things better in words or graphically? More concisely? More professionally? Using video that leaves a more memorable impression?
With the same practicality / beauty / creativity / humor / wit that you / your products / services / company are valued / known / awarded / striving for?
This masterpiece on LinkedIn is your brand. If you have unique products or services, the same creativity must be reflected in the prose of how you self-identify on LinkedIn.
This is what I was explaining to a CEO of an up-and-coming European company yesterday.
He does not have a great LinkedIn profile. His company, and everyone in the firm, need to better express the differentiators: the image of the firm, the competitive benefits of his products, and most importantly, of his staff, individually, but unified as a collection of individuals who make his company cohesive and cutting-edge.
To which he said, “I want to be the dumbest person in the firm surrounded by smart people.” (I believe I am quoting him correctly….).
Smart man leading a smarter firm.
Knows he is still morphing as a brand and needs to tell that story in a richer, more illustrative way too. Details cannot be missed. There can be no confusion in what is presented to the reader. On his profile, and his company’s, and that of everyone who works for him.
Now before it’s too late and an opportunity to impress is missed.