Wednesday, January 02, 2008

Treat every connection like a potential employer or client

The best way to leverage your connections on Linkedin is to treat every person like as if he/she were a potential employer or client.

In other words, communicate ALL the information that is necessary for your connections to understand that you are the BEST person for a particular kind of job.

This requires that you develop a systematic methodology to FULLY CONVEY the ABSOLUTE CERTAINTY that you are THE PERSON who is MOST QUALIFIED for and MOST MOTIVATED to do the job.

That's the secret that very, very few job seekers know.

Indeed, you should use your imagination and creativity to prove that you are the obviously correct choice for the job or contract.

For instance, imagine a company seeking a Proposal Writer. This person is in charge of managing the writing, editing and production of multimillion-dollar proposals which are submitted to executive buyers after a request for proposal (RFP).

Most candidates applying for such a job would typically send in a resume and cover letter.

The smart job seeker, however, sends in also the typical Proposal (in a neat binder) that he would do if he were really working as a Proposal Writer. In other words, he doesn't just send in "promises" (which is what a resume and cover letter really are), but actual "proof" that he CAN do the job and that he is (very) motivated to do the job.

Here's another metaphor that captures the same idea, so it can be understood clearly and so you can see its power and begin to let it work for you.

Imagine a beautiful woman being "pursued" by 5 males. 4 of them send her a love letter, including promises to do this or that for her. The fifth man encloses a piece of jewelry, with her name inscribed on it.

It's obvious who of the five males will be the lucky one!

The trick -- and this is a powerful trick -- is never to merely "apply for a job," but to "act like as if you had the job already."

Similarly, the trick is to treat EVERY one of your Linkedin connections like an employer or client. So do give them ALL the information they need to make the right decision (which is to hire you or contract you). Once they have ALL the relevant information, even if they are not in a position to hire you, they will at least be in a good position to recommend you to their connections.