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You have a great job BUT secretly you have always wanted to be a Disney princess or a sports announcer for ESPN. When Disney and ESPN are looking through thousands of LinkedIn profiles for their next perfect hire will they find you? If your LinkedIn profile is out of date and stale, you will end up missing out on the biggest opportunity of your life. You need to stand out.

Don’t laugh. It happens all the time. In fact, LinkedIn tells us 72% of companies are actively recruiting passive talent, talent not actively seeking a change in jobs. Passive recruiting, sometimes called “poaching” is one of the biggest reasons company recruiters turn to LinkedIn to find talent.

LinkedIn is the number one recruiting tool and you need to have an amazing profile on LinkedIn even if you are not actively looking for a new job. Why? Because great opportunities sometimes come along, and you don’t want to be left out of the mix. Be “poachable.”

So how do recruiters find candidates and candidates find jobs on LinkedIn?

Here are some of LinkedIn’s own juicy nuggets:

Trends in Recruiting

In 2015, recruiting budgets and the volume of recruits heated up for the first time in four years of stagnation. And, it hasn’t stopped. The use of social professional networks (like LinkedIn) “…skyrocketed” to become the top source of “quality hires.” It is a great job market. In fact, the biggest challenge companies have in recruiting talent is competition.

Passive Talent

If you haven’t heard the term before, passive talent means that someone isn’t actively looking for a job. They are “completely satisfied” with their current position. Globally, 75% of talent consider themselves passive. But as you know, better opportunities come along and people take them. So much so, that companies, especially smaller companies, are prioritizing passive talent recruitment. Roughly 72% of companies recruit passive talent.

This is important to you because it reinforces the need to keep your LinkedIn profile updated. You don’t want to miss that call from Disney!

How long do people stay at their jobs and why do they leave?

According to research, people stay in a position for about 4 years. In 2016, 89% of all professionals in the US and Canada were interested in hearing about new opportunities even if they were not actively looking for a change.

In the US and Canada, 44% of employees leave their jobs because of lack of career advancement, where 35% leave because they are unhappy with senior leadership. This is pretty much the case all over the world.

LinkedIn’s view through the crystal ball

“Social professional networks are the most important and fastest growing source of quality hires in the US, increasing 57% over the past 4 years.” And recruiters around the world consider professional networks to be the “long-lasting trend” in recruiting.

In the US and Canada, 55% of leaders expect their hiring volume to increase. To keep up with this demand for talent, they are focusing on how long new hires stay with a company. Most companies are trying to accomplish this by improving their “employer brand messaging.” Employee referrals have become the top source of quality hires.

Who are recruiters looking for?

The high priority fills for company recruiters are:

  • Operations
  • Sales
  • Information Technology
  • Engineering
  • Business Development

Count yourself lucky if you are in one of these groups.

Here are three things you can do right now on LinkedIn to increase your poachability.

1. Work on your summary.

  • This section is free form so you can say things that reveal who you are as a person that could never be said in a resume. It’s a little window into your soul. Here is an example of a profile summary opener:
    • “I always thought I wanted to be a professional musician. I dreamed of the big time. What I found is that the road to stardom was a “hungry” one. Seriously, I got hungry…it doesn’t pay well. Fortunately, a Navy recruiter moved in next to my childhood home and the rest is history.
  • Tell a story about what you do, who you are, and where you are headed.
  • The best approach is to just describe what you actually did following the format known as “PAR” (Problem, Action, Result).
  • Be authentic and speak in first person.
  • White space is good. You don’t need to use all 2,000 words.
  • End with a call to action such as, “Give me a call and let’s talk.”

2. Avoid overused words.

The topmost 10 overused words from 2016 were:

  • Strategic
  • Organizational
  • Motivated
  • Driven
  • Passionate
  • Track record
  • Responsible
  • Extensive experience
  • Dynamic
  • Creative

Make your thesaurus your new best friend.

3. Have a professional headshot taken.

  • No photo is the kiss of death. LinkedIn tells us that profiles with photos are 21 times more likely to be viewed than those without.
  • Selfies won’t do.
  • Only you in the picture…no significant others, avatars, pets, or pictures of something other than you.
  • And if you are really brave (HINT: you need to be), consider submitting your photo to www.photofeeler.com where others will rate it based on influence, likability, and credibility.
  • Do these things now. We will continue working on this in the next blog.

It has taken me a few years to grow my network to approximately 12,000 connections. Stick with me and I will show you how to craft powerful summaries and a myriad of other related techniques to grow your network.

Take care till next week,



Facebook: facebook.com/robertbaird001/
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LinkedIn: linkedin.com/in/robertwbaird/

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