Thursday, January 28, 2010

LinkedIn to Business


By Jessica Tobin

LinkedIn is a business-oriented social networking site. Founded in December 2002 by Reid Hoffman and launched in May 2003. It is used as a professional networking media. The new CEO of LinkedIn is Jeff Weiner, who was once a Yahoo! Inc executive. LinkedIn allows members to create business contacts (called connections on LinkedIn), search for jobs, and find potential clients. Members have the ability to create their own professional profile that can be viewed by others in their network, and also view the profiles of their own contacts. Employers can look for people to hire also, as you can post your resume.

There are more than 55 million people on LinkedIn taking advantage of all the professionals who get on this site and network. Executives from all fortune 500 companies are members. Over half of these people are from the United States alone, 11 million are from Europe and 3 million are from India. There are170 industries and over 200 countries around the world using LinkedIn.

Networking is important when you are trying to get a job, ever hear it’s not what you know, it’s who you know? This is a website that combines both of these! You post what you know, and meet the people you need to know to get ahead. By adding all the people you know to your connections, you can see who they are connected with too, and if they know someone you want to be introduced to for a job, you can ask them to introduce you. This is like ‘mutual friends’ on facebook. If there is someone you would like to meet, you would search your mutual friends and that is how you would be able to meet that person.

Also, when you are researching a company you may want to look for, there are all kinds of statistics about the company. These statistics include female to male ratio of the employees, the percentage of most common titles/positions in the company, location of company’s headquarters and offices, or it could even include a list of employees who work there or used to work there.

There are other features of LinkedIn like LinkedIn Answers and LinkedIn Groups. LinkedIn Answers is a lot like Google Answers, or Yahoo Answers, except more business oriented with the questions and the people who answer the questions. LinkedIn Groups are like the networks on Facebook, but can include anything from alumni to greek or sports teams. With LinkedIn groups, this is a good way to see what you have in common in life outside of the business world with other people in your industry.

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