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What LinkedIn steps should I be taking right now to prepare myself for a possible job switch in the near future?

Since the pandemic hit, this is the #1 question I get from people who are looking to upgrade their careers.

In response to this question, I have created a brand new virtual workshop Leverage LinkedIn for Your Job Search During the Pandemic: Get noticed. Get past the gatekeeper. Get hired. I invite you to attend next Monday, June 1, from 2:00-4:00PM CT. No worries if you're busy because all registrants will receive a recording of the session.

In the workshop I'll be presenting five specific strategies you can implement right now. Here is one action step for each of those strategies.
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OPTIMIZE your profile

Improve and expand your headline. You only get one shot at a first impression. Make it a good one. It’s short—only 120 characters on the desktop—so you’ll need to be creative. But if you input this section using your LinkedIn mobile app, you get 220 characters. A note of caution: This hack seems to work consistently when using Apple devices but inconsistently on non-Apple devices.

Keep in mind this section is some of the most fertile ground to plant the most important keywords recruiters and HR professionals will use to search for you.
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LEVERAGE your network

Let the right people in your network know you're looking for a job. Your LinkedIn network probably includes quite a few people who would be willing to help you secure a new position if you simply ask for their help. There are a couple ways LinkedIn can help you accomplish this.

The first way is to download your entire LinkedIn connection database. After you've reviewed and narrowed that list to people you think can help you with your job search, import the targeted list to a contact database you use to communicate with others (Outlook, Mail Chimp, Gmail, etc.), and send a group email to update them about your job search.

Click here to learn how to complete this download.

The second way is to perform a targeted search of just your first-degree connections, and then send direct messages through LinkedIn to people you believe can help you. Learn specifically how to do that here.
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REVIEW your settings

Enable your Open to Job Opportunities setting. Lots of job seekers didn't even notice when this new feature became available a couple months ago. If you're one of those people, you better head to your settings ASAP and get this set up correctly. It won't take more than five minutes.

You can choose five specific job titles and locations you're interested in as well as the type of job (full-time, part-time, contract, etc.). And it's your decision whether you show this information on your profile or hide it.

Enable this setting by following the steps outlined here.
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BUILD your target company list

Complete a filtered people search using the Alumni tab on the University page.  One of the best tools for building out a target company list is the Alumni feature on the University page of a school you've attended. I have outlined how this feature works in detail in this article. Once you use the filters and decide what cities you'd like to work in, what type of job you want, etc., LinkedIn will display the companies who hire the most alumni in that job function.
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IMPROVE your LinkedIn routines and activities

Review profiles of and send connection requests to hiring managers and recruiters. Before we had LinkedIn, it was almost impossible to get a hiring manager or an industry-specific recruiter to look at your resume. But that's all changed now that you have a LinkedIn profile.

By monitoring the Who's Viewed Your Profile feature and sending customized LinkedIn connection requests, it's quite simple to get them to take a look.

To get started, you'll need to use the Advanced People Search feature. Search for people with specific titles at the companies you're targeting or applying to as well as recruiters who specialize in your region, industry, or job function. Here is an article where I share a step-by-step process to locate these people.

If you're considering a career move anytime soon, get busy and execute these simple but highly effective strategies, and you'll be well on your way to landing that great new job.

If you'd like more winning strategies for finding a terrific new job in these unprecedented times, be sure to register soon for my workshop on June 1 by clicking here.