How to use LinkedIn to find your dream job

1. Job description: “make sure the job you’re seeking is… highly relevant to who you are and what you do.”
2. Key words: “study each job description and use the words it uses in your profile and résumé.”
Before you apply for positions bake those words into your profile. (To add skills to your profile, <a href=”” target=”_blank”>check out this guide on LinkedIn</a>.)
3. Groups and influencers: “start a business conversation—not a job conversation—that shows off your smarts… joining relevant groups and following people on LinkedIn who are connected to your career interests… comment on relevant topics in public forums, which may get you the attention from so-called “influencers” that you’re seeking.

…a high number of jobs are what he calls “hidden” ones… develop multiple relationships over time with the right people, they will come to you with these job openings.
(Click <a href=”” target=”_blank”>here for an alphabetical listing</a> or here to<a href=”” target=”_blank”> search by interest, organization,</a> or affiliation.)
4. Your profile… “Make sure your profile’s headline “reflects the job you’re seeking, not the job you currently have.” …join [your] college page, former employer pages, or professional/trade associations. Keep up with your connections even when not seeking a new position… More than anything, Steinfeld stressed the importance of having a connection with someone inside the organization where you want to work.”
5. Photo, location, college: … “take a professional development class at a top-ranked university and including its name in your profile. MOOCs
The takeaway: LinkedIn is the go-to site for job seekers, but taking the time to optimize your network and your profile in advance is key to making it pay off for you with the perfect new position.
<i>USA TODAY columnist Steven Petrow offers advice about living in the digital age. Submit your question at </i><a target=”_blank”><em></em></a><em>. You can also follow Petrow on Twitter: </em><a href=”” target=”_blank”><em>@StevenPetrow</em></a><em>. Or like him on Facebook at </em><a href=”” target=”_blank”><em></em></a><em>.</em>