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In talking to some parents at the school my kids go to, I realised that LinkedIn is not a social network that many of them seem to be familiar with; but it should be, as it can really help with finding a job (or building your own business).

Many parents I know absolutely love Facebook, which can be a lifeline when they are stuck at home with the kids, particularly if they live far away from friends and family support.

On Facebook, they can share small victories, look for support, get a good giggle and keep in contact with the people they love.

Many creative mums have also picked up on the highly visual social networks such as Pinterest and Instagram, sharing everything from their baking prowess to family shots and interior design inspiration.

Here are a few reasons why I think parents should check out LinkedIn:

1. Get yourself a job

As a parent you may have been out of the workforce for some time raising kids.

If you are ready to re-enter it, you would already know the adage ‘It’s not what you know, it’s who you know.’

LinkedIn is a social network for professionals, so even long before you are thinking of returning to work and without even leaving the house, you can start connecting with people who might be in a position to offer you a job in the future or who might know someone looking.

On LinkedIn, you can, for instance, search for people by location or industry, and you could check out their profile before you shoot them off a connection request.

Therefore, even if you are seeking a career change from what you were doing pre-kids, you may be able to achieve that through LinkedIn.

2. Get your children a job

If you have a teenager at home and you want to get them some part-time work for the never-ending requests for money and high-ticket items, LinkedIn is also worth checking out.

The legal age to start a LinkedIn profile used to be 18 years, however recently it has been lowered to 13 years.

This enables them to start building their online resume and network young.  If your child meets this requirement, encourage them to set up their very own LinkedIn profile. They can then start to connect with potential employers – even if it is just work experience or an internship to start with.

As an employer, I am never that impressed if the mum or dad does the legwork for the child. This does not display any kind of initiative, and to me it suggests a domineering parent. I am therefore less likely to give them a shot.

I would much rather the child have the get up and go to get in touch, and I am quite prepared to overlook the nerves and lack of skills if I can see a good attitude and initiative that I can harness as an employer.

3. Promote your business

If you have a home-based business, helping your partner to run one, or seeking to promote services or products to other business – LinkedIn is definitely the place you want to be in.

I meet a lot of people who think Facebook is the ‘be-all-and-end-all’.

Facebook is generally a good place to target consumers, while LinkedIn is generally a good place for targeting businesses.

Apart from setting up a profile for yourself (and, if relevant, your partner), definitely also look at LinkedIn to set up a free company page too, and then do some training on it so you know all the functions and features to start reaping business benefits from it.

4. Get yourself a confidence boost

As a parent, the focus can be so much on your kids and not yourself; it is easy to forget who you are and what you are good at.

If you need a confidence boost for the day, I encourage you to go onto LinkedIn and seek recommendations from previous employers that will not only make your LinkedIn profile look great, but that will also hopefully give you a spring in your step too.

5. Get your message through

Whilst email is well and good, statistics show that people are two to three times more likely to open a message sent via LinkedIn.

There are a number of reasons for this, but the main one is that people on LinkedIn will generally only accept connections that they are really willing to connect and engage with, thus making it very difficult for people to spam you.

If you were seeking a result that you were not getting from emailing people – for instance you may be looking for a great speaker for an event you are organising for the school, maybe you are trying to find a good doctor or specialist for your family, or some other expert on another topic – you could turn to LinkedIn.

You’ll find it much easier to find people on LinkedIn than on Google searches, and you’ll have a much higher chance of a direct message response.

If you have been surprised by some of the practical examples that LinkedIn can do – and believe that it might suit you – I encourage you to check it out!

If you’d like more training, we’d love to see you at one of our LinkedIn training courses! Do you use Linkedin? Do your kids? Has it helped you? Has this article made you consider looking at it? Why not leave a comment below.

NOTE: This article is an excerpt from a new book by the author ‘No Kidding – Why Our Kids Know More About Technology Than Us and What We Can Do About It’. Get your copy here.
Image courtesy of Shutterstock.com
  • Thanks, I wasn’t aware of this.

    Reply

  • linked in is great if you have the right connections and obviously you can get connected to the right people through using this.

    Reply

  • I use my LinkedIn account but nowhere near as much as I should. I check it daily but I don’t actually write anything, more so for browsing

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  • Yet another online application to invade our lives. I signed up for LinkedIn, got a couple of email requests about it, and that was about it

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  • I had never thought of using Linkedin this way – will have to keep it in mind and pass on to mums with older kids as well as getting myself sorted. Thanks.

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  • Good knowledge to know! Thanks for sharing this!

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  • I never knew anything like this existed. I will definitely be doing some exploration. Thanks for pointing me in another direction.

    Reply

  • I have never heard of Linkedin before so thankyou for your informative article.

    Reply

  • Really great article. There is some great advice. My son is only very young but for me finding work in the future after study there are some great points.

    Reply

  • I’m not sold on LinkedIn but this article has some interesting points. I’m off to consider whether I should join.

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  • Thanks for the useful viewpoint!

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  • I have had a LinkedIn account for 2 years and since I set up my profile, I have become friends with a lot of people who work in the same industry as me, I’ve been given heaps of job offers from different companies, because of all the skills I have listed in my profile (which are all honest skills) and I have also had the opportunities to be invited to industry related formal events from other friends and companies, due to having a profile on LinkedIn.

    Reply

  • Great article with some very handy tips. Thank you.

    Reply

  • so beautiful look,Thanks for the great tips

    Reply

  • As a multiple business owner, I have been a member of Linked In for a few years now. I would definitely be interested in offering some young people an opportunity of a lifetime. I am a partner in Four Oceans, a brand new company in the World. It is great. There are various opportunities available, and no selling is required. Four Oceans is a Multi Level Marketing company, we market Travel and Happiness. There are different ways to sign up – Happy, Happier and Happiest. Depending on where you sign up, you have a possibility of making a considerable amount of money. Have a look at my website – http://www.fouroceans.net/doodles but there is more, I have a file that I can email you that has our 9 step Compensation plan. The opportunity is amazing for anyone, I mean anyone. You may be young, needing to earn a quid and you want your own business, you may know plenty of people in the same situation, OR You may be a stay at home mum that wants to earn that bit of extra income, OR you may be a business owner and want to expand your business, Four Oceans can work hand-in-hand with many other businesses OR you may be working Full Time in a job that you are not really happy with and you want to start earning other money so you can get out of that job. Send me an email to m.d.lindsay@bigpond.com after looking at the website, I will send you the file, have a look then give me a call, or we can skype and I will go through the file with you. It can be difficult to understand exactly how much money you can earn.

    Good Luck to everyone for 2015, Lets bring some Happiness to everyone, We all would love to travel all over the world but most importantly we all want to be Happy. See the site Now. xxx dee Merry Christmas Everyone.

    Reply

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