State-hopping professionals: let LinkedIn ground you

Whether you are a corporate or non-profit state-hopping professional, you’re facing a major challenge: establishing your credibility and maintaining your confidence while starting a new job—or looking for one—in a new city.

For you, “Don’t they know who I am and what I can do?” is a common, exasperated internal mantra. Trust me, I’m on my third state as a professional public relations strategist.

Face it. These new-to-you people do not know who you are—and it could take them a long time to find out unless you properly introduce yourself.

It’s time to LinkIn and LinkUp.

When is the last time you loved on your LinkedIn account? Many—including me—have found this free, web-based Rolodex to be immensely helpful for seeking out local mentors and industry leaders.

If you are new to LinkedIn, or have an abandoned profile, be sure you include a purposeful bio, your specialties, any of your publications and relevant websites. Next, ask your current and former colleagues to “recommend” you publicly on LinkedIn. The best way to initiate this is to recommend connections and ask them to return the favor.

Once your profile is ready for prime time, search for peers in your profession in your new city and politely ask a few of them to coffee via LinkedIn’s InMail feature.

Yes, I am suggesting you ask a stranger to meet with you. No, I’m not the only one who does this. Lauren, a former D.C. colleague of mine who recently moved to Denver, shares my enthusiasm for this method:

Lauren

 

 

And it works! I have been on both ends of this invitation and find these sessions are (usually) fun and effective. If you don’t want to reach out cold turkey, Chris’ tactic works well, too:

Chris

 

 

The bottom line: moving to a new city does not mean starting over.  From Meetup.com to LinkedIn to Twitter, strategic and thoughtful use of online platforms can help you break the ice, build your brand and put you back on top in no time.

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