The following is a guest post from: Keith Carlson, RN, BSN, NC-BC
Have you considered LinkedIn for travel nurse networking?
Online networking is nothing new, and professionals the world over are using a plethora of platforms for building their networks. Apparently, some travel nurses haven’t embraced LinkedIn as readily as other sectors of the nursing profession, and now is the best time in your career to rethink your travel nurse networking strategy and use Linked In to its fullest potential.
LinkedIn is a powerful platform for advancing your career and developing a robust travel nurse professional network. In the past, LinkedIn was dismissed simply as a place to bookmark and share your online resume or CV, but it has truly proven to be much more than that for the savvy 21st-century professional.
A Powerful Search Engine
LinkedIn is likely the most powerful career search engine on the Internet, and its reach continues to grow. Headhunters and recruiters use the premium version of Linked In to search for candidates for open positions.
Meanwhile, many companies have their own corporate LinkedIn pages. You can follow their newsfeeds and keep up to date on the latest trends in the industry. Chances are that your travel nurse company is on LinkedIn.
Many Linked In users—both individuals and companies—post valuable content on Linked In. I can’t tell you how many fascinating and useful articles I’ve read by browsing my Linked In updates. There are a variety of specific feeds on LinkedIn for travel nurses.
Showcasing Your Personal Brand
Your Linked In profile is your opportunity to showcase your personal brand. Wax poetic about your work history, certifications, education and training. Receive endorsements and recommendations from your colleagues and supervisors that everyone who views your profile can read.
Think of your LinkedIn profile as a robust, interactive online resume that puts your best foot forward and demonstrates your specific expertise and experience to the world.
It’s All About Connections
These days, you don’t necessarily find jobs through CraigsList and the classifieds. LinkedIn is all about who you know, and making connections is at the heart of the platform.
Many LinkedIn travel nurse users don’t truly understand how to build their professional network. When using LinkedIn for travel nurses networking strategy don’t blindly and impersonally make connections. Personalize your message or attempt to build real relationships.
I personally never send a generic request to connect with another user on LinkedIn. Rather, I send each individual a personalized invitation. I explain why I want to connect and how I think we may be able to create a positive professional relationship. When I meet someone with whom I feel particularly aligned, I arrange for a phone call or Skype conversation to further develop our connection. Through my growing network on Linked In, I’ve made friends, created business alliances, found freelance work, and had the satisfaction of introducing other professionals who I felt would benefit from knowing one another.
How to maximize connections on LinkedIn for Travel Nurses
Remember: it’s not just about what others can do for you; it’s also about how you give back.
For the travel nurse LinkedIn offers ways to find others in your industry, or to look for connections based on geographic location or other search criteria. And once you establish relationships with people with whom you feel professionally aligned, you can then explore their connection, ask for introductions, or introduce yourself to other professionals you’d like to meet.
Linked In is like an enormous cocktail party of professionals who’d love to get to know you. You just have to know how to navigate the platform and use it your advantage. (and to the advantage of others whom you know, trust and want to be of service to).
Most importantly, social networking is about building trust and mutuality. Linked In is a great place to grow your network and make authentic and fruitful professional connections.
The Value of Groups
Linked In also offers the function of groups where like-minded professionals can connect, ask questions, and network in private chats and newsfeeds. Nurses working in specific speciality areas often form private groups where clinical and professional advice can be shared. Join our Gypsy Nurse LinkedIn for Travel Nurses.
LinkedIn for Travel Nurses is Networking Gold
Our professional networks and connections are like gold, and that gold can be mined throughout your career. Even if you currently have a position with a company that’s comfortable and positive, you never know what the future holds, and aligning yourself with other individuals and organizations that could help you at some distant time is worth your while.
In conclusion, Linked In is a professional network that should not be ignored. In fact, of every social media platform currently available for professionals like you, it’s probably the one you can least afford to ignore.
Keith Carlson, RN, BSN, NC-BC
Keith is a Board-Certified Nurse Coach. He is also a contributor for several nursing and health websites, and has maintained an award-winning blog, Digital Doorway, since 2005. You can read more about Keith on his website NurseKeith.com