Posted by: waynebreitbarth | September 11, 2011

LinkedIn Gets a Heart

Changes, changes, changes.  

 

LinkedIn continues to make changes. You’d think they were trying to stay in the spotlight to raise their stock price or something! 

 

Most of the time I hate the changes because they are just that — changes. I guess that comes with being a 53-year-old set-in-his-ways business owner who doesn’t want to make changes to his top selling LinkedIn book on Amazon! I really shouldn’t get frustrated with all the change LinkedIn is making (along with their poor communication about those changes) because it allows me to be the person you look to for keeping you up to speed on what is new and useful on the site.

 

This week I want to highlight a new profile section LinkedIn recently added called Volunteer Experience & Causes. You add this to your profile by selecting “Add sections,” which is just below your top blue box when you are in Profile Edit. Don’t miss the video tutorial that follows this discussion. It will show you how to find it and how to add your information to your profile.  

 

heartI like to refer to this addition as LinkedIn Gets A Heart. 

 

Whether you are a volunteer or a financial supporter of a charity, I have always been a fan of including that charity in your profile. This can be displayed in a number of areas, including Job Experience, Summary, Specialties, Interests, or Groups and Associations. I also encourage you to join any related LinkedIn group that exists specifically for your charity or around the need or topic in general.  

 

After all, one of your top priorities when developing your profile should be to help the readers see you as a credible, interesting person with whom they want to work in some way. Showing your involvement with local and national charities tells another part of your professional story, and this may be appealing to some of the people you are trying to do business with.  

 

The new section is really three topics in one:
  • Volunteer Positions I have held 
    • You get to include the name of the organization, your position, time frame for your service, and a detailed description of the mission and purpose of the organization.
  • Causes I care about
    • Here you can choose from a list Linkedin provides (e.g., children, education, etc.) or enter your own specific cause (e.g., financial literacy, cancer research, etc.)
  • Organizations I support
    • In this section you begin to type the name of the organization you are supporting, and LinkedIn will look through the list of organizations in its database and find the one you want to include on your profile. This is another reason you should make sure your favorite charitable organization has a company profile on LinkedIn. 

The bottom line is I really like this additional profile section. 

 

I continue to  recommend that you include any significant ongoing charitable work as a separate Job Experience on your profile, because it will appear higher and thus more prominently (in the top blue box) on your profile. In addition, you can receive recommendations that can attach to any significant charity work you are doing. And as I have shared with you before, recommendations are the juices that fuel the new trust economy

 

This video tutorial shows you how to add this section and includes strategy tips for effectively using the section.

Linkedin Profile-Volunteer Experience & Causes
Linkedin Profile-Volunteer Experience & Causes

 

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