Like several others, I didn’t understand what LinkedIn was all about and couldn’t understand why I needed it. So I dug about and finally have an answer in plain English and found out what does LinkedIn actually do.
LinkedIn has over 200 million users which represent roughly 125 different professions in around 200 countries. These numbers are of course increasing everyday though.
When you mention social network most people think of things like facebook where you share pictures of your dog chasing its own tail, photos of your tea and statuses about the weather, neighbours annoying you and I’m proud to be a parent buttons. LinkedIn doesn’t want to know all that but instead what work skills you have, what qualifications you have, the promotion you just got and who you do and have worked for. LinkedIn is an online social network that connects people in their professional capacity, so it focuses on your working like instead of your social life. Think of it as an extension of the face to face networking that you may do in your local area.
Once your on LinkedIn ( don’t worry I will be going through all that too in other posts) you can connect to a network of people. There are three ways of connecting to other people. First Degree connections are people you are directly connected to, they are the centre of your network. Each person connected to one of those direct connections is a second degree connection . Those linked to you through a second level are your third degree connections.
One of the main features of LinkedIn is that you can find anyone you have been or associated in a working, business or education environment. It’s these people that could help you do various things like..
- Looking for a new job.
- Finding out about prospective employees/employers.
- Researching business questions and issues you may have.
- Providing you with networking opportunities.
- Showcasing your expertise, knowledge and skills.