Monday, December 29, 2014
Not Widely Known But Incredibly Helpful LinkedIn Feature
I usually steer away from writing about LinkedIn because the user interface changes on what seems to be a daily basis (slight exaggeration but not by much). I have found though that a significant number of people are not aware of a feature that has been in LinkedIn for a while that is very helpful. It allows you to track how you met a contact, record additional contact information for and notes about that person, organize and lookup your contacts into groupings (tags) – groups that you define, and to set periodic reminders to reach out to your contact.
Here is my disclaimer. LinkedIn may (probably will) change the user interface at any time. This article was based on the interface as of this writing (Dec 2014). Also since LinkedIn changes frequently, I suggest backing up or recording the information in another place as well.
Where to find these features
These features work for your first level connections only. Go into a first level contact’s profile and under their picture, you will see two tabs: Relationship preceded by a star and Contact Info preceded by an icon of a rolodex file tab.
It is important to know that only you can see the information you are entering into these fields.
There are multiple features under the Relationship tab.
The field under this option allows you to document information you would like to retain about this person either about them or about conversations you had with them.
Job Seeker Tip: A person with strong interpersonal skills remembers things about the other person to show that they care. Since memory does not get better with age, this is a place you can store that information in order to personalize your conversations with them.
The option allows you to set a periodic reminder (day, week, month or recurring) and a field to record a note about what it is you want to remember to do.
Job Seeker Tip: Job security does not come from a job title, company, or industry. Instead job security today comes from keeping your skills up, your experience current, and your network active. To keep your network active you need to stay in touch. It is not the number of people you meet but the depth of the contact. Set a reminder so you stay in touch with each of your contacts on a regular basis; your closer contacts you will want to stay in touch with on a more regular basis but you should reach out to everyone at least once a year. This feature can help with that.
How You Met
At the bottom of the Relationship window is the date you connected with this person on LinkedIn. If however, you have a number of contacts or like me have a less than strong memory, it is good to remember how you know each other. There is a large note field as well as a separate field to enter the name of the person who introduced you. As you enter the name this field is automatically propagated (autotype) using the names of your LinkedIn contacts that match.
Job Seeker Tip: When you are out networking and receive a business / network card from someone, in addition to what it is you want to get back to them about, note on the back of the card where and when you met them. Once you connect on LinkedIn, you can enter that information into LinkedIn using this feature.
At the top of the Relationship and Contact Info window are the tags (groupings) associated with this contact. Hovering over the tag there is a message displaying “See contacts tagged
” indicating that
you can look up others with this same tag in your contact list.
This lookup feature did not return a list for me. It is either because most of my connections are all of the same type and I didn’t wait long enough or this feature is not working at this moment.
When you click Tag on the Relationship window, a list of options with checkboxes will display. The option that was used when you initially connected on LinkedIn (the answer to How do You Know…) will be checked. You can check more than one tag for this person which puts them into other searchable groupings for you. To remove a tag from a person, just unclick that box.
Also under this option you can add a new tag and manage tags.
Add New Tag
Once you click Add New Tag, a single field will display where you enter in the name of the new tag you are adding and then click Save. This tag will now display in your available tag list.
Under the Manage Tag option, you can rename (edit) tags or delete tags to remove them from your available tags list.
The Contact Info tab has specific information fields for your contact that are propagated from the person’s LinkedIn profile or you can enter them including e-mail, Birthday, IM address, Phone, Address, and websites.
Job Seekers Tip: You may have the e-mail addresses or phone numbers of people you didn’t even know you had.
If you have any additional tips regarding these options I encourage you to go to the original article on my blog (RightChangesJobSearchCoach.blogspot.com) and comment on this article. Be sure to test them before submitting them.