Ian's Blog

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LinkedIn Profile: Visibility and Conversion

LinkedIn Profile: Visibility and Conversion

I recently received this nice looking notice from LinkedIn regarding my LinkedIn profile. My initial reaction was to be pleased and pat myself on the back. Hey, my profile was top 1% of most viewed profiles for the year!

Sounds great. However, with 200 million users and growing, that puts me in the company of well, another 2 million minus 1 users. So, clearly, some perspective is called for. With LinkedIn’s enormous growth over the last few years, I imagine that millions of users are only minimally engaged.

The publishing of this metric did get me thinking about LinkedIn profile visibility, tips for optimizing profiles and furthering our professional goals.

  • First, what drivers can be used to increase your LinkedIn profile visibility.
  • And second, to what end? What do you want to happen when someone views your profile? What kind of conversion metrics make sense, if any.

I will talk more about these two topics in upcoming posts.

On work life balance – a raw read from Merlin Mann | 43 Folders

In the Inbox of my DevonThink Pro Office app, I keep a Read/Review folder to which I post articles and sites to, well, you know. I just came across this. It isn’t that new (April, 2011). 

This articles deserves to be posted it because it is awesome. And the writer, Merlin Mann, is well, awesome as well. Specifically, Merlin gives us the raw, honest truth as he comes to a Jerry Maguire type epiphany in the moment that working on his book contract ain’t what he wants to be doing. 

If you struggle (who doesn’t) with being tugged between the expectations to / commitments from others, the work you really want to do, and where / with who you really want to be, then Cranking | 43 Folders will speak to you. 

It did to me. Seriously. Read it. 

Choose the good boss when making a job decision

I came across great career advice the other day, backed up by research. I have unfortunately misplaced the source. The advice was as follows:

When you are choosing whether to align yourself with a job opportunity or not (new job, promotion, project), and in particular when you have some choice, pay careful attention to your prospective boss. And when trying to choose between two similar roles, you are far better off going with the person who your best judgment suggests would be the better boss. Even at the expense of a bit of a cash differential.

So, how do you know if the person is a “good boss?” I gave a bit of thought to this and present the following advice:

  1. Use LinkedIn, or ask them directly, to find out something about their career history. Does this person have a career trajectory that suggests they are effective and successful?
  2. Looking again at LinkedIn. Does he/she have a healthy amount of recommendations in a 360-sense….boss, peers and subordinates. Recommendations from subordinates that support this person’s interest in developing his/her people while not absolute proof, can certainly be very valuable evidence.
  3. Has your prospective boss worked for a fantastic boss? Like attracts like.
  4. How much leadership experience does your prospective boss have? While little experience is certainly a flag, it need not be a deal killer, all things considered.
  5. What do the company / organization names say about this person’s brand? If you see employment brands that shout well-managed, strong people cultures, that is a good sign (making assumptions about their hiring thoroughness and criteria for someone to stay and thrive in that world)
  6. If you have relationships in the market, use old-fashioned (and discreet) asks among contacts to get a sense of the person’s abilities, style and character. Again, LinkedIn might point you to shared connections.
  7. What do you need to learn in the next stage of your professional development and what can you learn from this person?
  8. Trust your gut – in particular the squeemish, nervous, spider-sense side of you. If something doesn’t feel right, walk away.

Any additional ideas from your experience?

6 Articles on the Holidays and Career Reflection and Planning

Over the years, I have posted some thoughts and ideas on managing the holiday experience, some of which has been published on Monster.com and other career / job related sites. 

Thinking it might be of use to highlight them as a collection, here they are for your reading pleasure. If you find yourself with the intent and / or time to do some career management / planning during the remainder of the holiday season, these articles may provide some guidance or inspiration. 

Reaching back all the way to 2005 (yes, I was blogging then), an intro to my Career Development During the Holiday Series, followed by something I called the Social Phase, then the Reflective Phase and finally the New Beginnings Phase

And of course, some thoughts about achieving Holiday Balance in a very busy and demanding period of time, as well as some personal reflections on achieving a state of clarity and rejuvenation from time off work. 

I hope you find these articles of value to you. 

Rebuilding my voice

I imagine that singers, actors and writers have experiences that cause their “voice” to dampen. Or they simply go through phases where they aren’t ready or able to produce their art.

I’ve definitely gone through that phase. In fact, you, dear reader, might notice that while this blog started way back in 2005, there has been very little activity for a long time.

It is time to change that. Or putting it another way, my voice is back, and I have a lot to say, relative to helping you make a living, and on some other topics as well.

But please don’t think that I haven’t been in the game.

In July of 2009, I took BoldCareer from a full-time to part-time endeavour and accepted the role of Director, Graduate Career Services UBC’s Sauder School of Business, a Top 100 global business school.

Which means that on a daily basis, I am running a coaching team, designing career-related e-learning and workshop programs / content, and interfacing with a set of highly intelligent and demanding customers called MBAs. And it is good fun.

But things are percolating on this site/blog and I am excited to start delivering some cool things to you over the coming weeks / months.

So, if you are new to the site, I welcome you and hope that you will follow me via email subscription, or the various social methods you can see on the toolbar at the bottom of the browser. And for returning visitors, thanks so much for staying in touch. Your loyalty and interest are greatly appreciated.

So, here we go!

If you want to achieve Everest-like career goals, Ian is the guide to help you get there!

Cory Smith

Business Development Executive, Vancouver, BC

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From tapping-in to your true value, to designing a stronger personal branding platform, to exploring innovative models for making a living and designing proactive and effective career changes and job searches, I explore, teach and champion ways to help you lead in your professional life.