Tag Archives: Excuses

8 common excuses for neglecting LinkedIn in your job search

“Are you using LinkedIn in your job search?” That’s one of the first questions I ask my clients when I sit with them. Most of them say they are using it frequently.

no-excuses

Others say they rarely are, and a few admit they aren’t using it at all and give excuses for not being on the greatest online networking application there is.

Here are 8 of the most common excuses I’ve heard from people who neglect LinkedIn.

1. I was told to join LinkedIn when I was working but haven’t used it

This is basically saying you don’t use LinkedIn. I have a Pinterest account but don’t know my user name or password. I didn’t see any reason for using it. How ignorant on my part.

I get this. Your boss or colleague suggested you join but you weren’t encouraged to use it for your benefit or the benefit of the the organization.

Smart organizations, especially those who believe in the power of B2B, will strongly suggest that LinkedIn be part of your routine.

2. My LinkedIn profile is great as is

One day I received a phone call from a gentleman who wanted to skip my LinkedIn Profile workshop so he could attend the more challenging workshop, Using LinkedIn to Find a job.

While he was talking, unbeknownst to him I was looking at his profile which was sparse and only showed 94 connections. His inflated opinion of his profile was definitely faulty. Perhaps he’d been given poor advice.

3. I posted my résumé on LinkedIn, so I’m done

Similar to excuse number 3. Whoever believes this has their head in the sand. Start your profile by copying and pasting the contents of your résumé to your profile. But that’s just a start. From there, you’ll turn it into a networking document.

Your résumé is a document you send out when applying for a job, while your profile is a place people come to learn about you as a person and professional.

Read this popular article on How to optimize your LinkedIn profile.

4. I don’t want to connect with people I don’t know

Here’s the thing, networking—whether it’s in person or online—is about meeting people and developing relationships.

Not everyone will turn out to be a valued connection, but if you don’t extend yourself, you’ll never know the potential networking offers.

Read The ultimate LinkedIn guide how to connect on LinkedIn.

5. I don’t have the time to use LinkedIn

I hear this often in my LinkedIn workshops. This is a huge excuse. I only ask them to spend 20 minutes, four days a week on LinkedIn. I see some of them shift in their seats, their eyes roll, some groans.

Using LinkedIn to find a job is an important tool in your tool chest. It’s worth it to put in the effort to help supplement your overall networking campaign.

Just because I am on LinkedIn approximately 30 minutes a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year doesn’t mean my workshop attendees have to do the same. That would be crazy.

6. I don’t want to brag

Related to the previous excuse, what you’re really saying is you don’t want to promote your value to employers and potential business partners.

You’re not bragging if you state facts and provide proof of your accomplishments. And avoid using superlatives, like “excellent,” “expert,” “outstanding.” They’re empty promises.

Too many people have given me this excuse for not promoting themselves both on their résumé and LinkedIn profile. These are people who have a more difficult time getting to the interview.

7. I don’t know how to post a status update

I get this. You’re not sure how you can provide your connections with relevant information.

You’ve just been laid off and lack the confidence to write words of wisdom. Don’t sweat it. At first share blog posts from your connections or from publications you enjoy reading.

This article provides ways to engage with your connection as opposed to just being active.

8. LinkedIn is too complicated

This must be what my daughter is feeling, as I haven’t seen her on LinkedIn…at all. I’ve also heard this from older job seekers who feel they can’t master the technology.

Granted I use LinkedIn on a regular basis, read articles from my colleagues, and have taught it to thousands of job seekers; you don’t have to be an authority on LinkedIn to use it.

LinkedIn might not be as sex as Instagram, but it’s purposes are to help you land a job and, once you’ve landed that job, use it for business purposes. What’s complicated about this?


Ending thought

One young, smug man told me he’d never have to use LinkedIn; he would always have a job as the assistant to the Mayor. He was attending the workshop I was delivering out of curiosity.

After our discussion, he went on a stint of serving coffee, a far cry from what he was doing. He contacted me and asked if I’d review his LinkedIn profile. At first I was inclined to say no, but I couldn’t hold his ignorance against him.

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Meeting 5 objections to joining LinkedIn

I’ve been invited to speak at a networking event about LinkedIn, where many of the participants are nonbelievers of this great online networking application. My initial reaction when I was asked to speak to the naysayers is to tell them that LinkedIn isn’t for everyone, but that would be the easy way out.

Excuse

Given that approximately 94% of recruiters/hiring managers use LinkedIn to find talent, a job seeker would be nuts not to be on LinkedIn and using it aggressively to look for employment. And this is what I need to convey to a room of people, some of whom will be shaking their heads.

While it is true that some of the attendees maybe beyond help, below are some excuses I plan to meet head on.

I don’t have time to create a profile

This is a common complaint; however, the prospect of creating a profile should not break their will. Copy and paste their résumé to their profile and go from there.

What do I mean, “take it from there”? Remember that the LinkedIn profile is not your resume. Whereas your resume lacks any mention of a subject (you), the profile should include personal pronouns, making it more personal.

Take your LinkedIn summary, for instance, it tells people a story about you and is generally longer than the resume summary. Talk about your passion for what you do (the why), explain who you serve (the who), and finally explain what you do and who well you do it (the what).

The experience section can be very similar to your resume. However, you can even personalize this section. Here’s an example of what I meant:

 I extended my training expertise by volunteering to train 5 office staff on our new database software. All members of the team were more productive as a result of my patient training style, increasing the team’s output by 75%.

I won’t have time to Update once a week

Quite honestly, posting an update once a week is not that hard to do. It’s as simple as commenting on a topic, attaching an article, posting a great quote, letting people know what they’re up to, etc.

That would be the bare minimum. If you want to take it to the next level, think about your activity as more. Engage with your connections by communicating with them. Write meaningful comments to what they share, instead of just liking it.

For now, do what you can in terms of sharing information. Just make sure the content your share benefits your connections.

There’s no way I can get 50 connections

Hogwash. LinkedIn allows users to download contacts from their e-mail account from the very beginning of registering for membership.

One just has to select the members they want to invite and soon acceptances and invites will come their way. Someone has to initiate contact; it might as well be them.

Note: I do not advise this way to make connections; instead go to their profiles, read them carefully, and send a personalized invite after selecting “Connect.”

I’m too young or too old

This is my favorite excuse to squash like a fly. When you’re young is the best time to start on LinkedIn. LinkedIn will most likely not offer you immediate gratification, but your initial investment will lead to a  lifelong pursuit of networking.

As far as you older attendees, I didn’t start using LinkedIn until I was in my mid-forties, and in a short period of time I’ve become well versed in the online application. Today’s forties is yesterday’s thirties.

So, don’t give me this excuse. I will say that if you’re starting from the ground floor, building a quality network and accumulating endorsements for your connections will be more challenging. But you can do it.

I don’t think people in my industry use LinkedIn

This is a valued point. Some industries don’t use LinkedIn to network as much as others. This is a tough mindset to break, albeit a faulty one. Think about occupations within your industry. For example, managers, accountants, project managers, and others are required for all industries.

Out of curiosity, I did a search for the most common and least common industries represented on LinkedIn. This list can be found on an article written in 2016.

The Top 10 Industries On LinkedIn

  1. Information Technology and Services
  2. Marketing and Advertising
  3. Human Resources
  4. Computer Software
  5. Financial Services
  6. Staffing and Recruiting
  7. Internet
  8. Management Consulting
  9. Telecommunications
  10. Retail

The Bottom 10 Industries On LinkedIn

  1. Dairy
  2. Nanotechnology
  3. Shipbuilding
  4. Judiciary
  5. Alternative Dispute Resolution
  6. Animation
  7. Legislative Office
  8. Fishery
  9. Railroad Manufacture
  10. Ranching

There are some excuses that will be are hard to counter, and I wrote a post on this. These are excuses I cannot counter:

1) I’m just curious; someone told me I’m guaranteed to get a job using LinkedIn.
2) I’m computer illiterate.
3) I’m afraid of putting information about myself on the Internet.

No one can offer the solution to every excuse, but the five listed above will be a breeze to counter. If you have another excuse, or two, let me know. I’ll add it to the list.

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