Social Media is transforming the way organisations position their employer brands and engage with potential talent. While the benefits to organisations are there to be seen, the talent community can also leverage these platforms to their advantage.
There’s enough information available online on creating an effective LinkedIn profile, getting started on twitter so this is not an advisory on how to spruce up your social media profiles. Instead, I want to draw your attention to the 4 Cs of leveraging social platforms:
Keep your eyes & ears open
What you do off-line has a huge impact on how you engage online. Engaging with social media requires a certain amount of self-awareness & confidence. These elements usually show in the quality of the social interactions. Simple things like reading books & blogs on the industry domain & staying abreast of the market trends in your area of choice can enable you to connect meaningfully with other members on social platforms. Lack of insights & not knowing what to say is amongst the top reasons why most people feel apprehensive about reaching out to others on social platforms. Asking questions, seeking information is an easy way to connect. It’s important to become an opinion seeker before becoming a job/favor seeker on social platforms.
Social media is all about learning to play a role in the wider community. Leverage comes over a period of time so remain consistent with your participation in social communities. This will also help you build your personal learning network (Group of people you can learn from online). Reading, listening and observing are all a strong second to first-hand experience so use social platforms to engage in these activities. Developing a point of view takes time but is a worthwhile investment. Social media enables being at the right place at the right time but being ready is often the differentiator.
Leverage insights of others who ‘Work-out loud’
Working Out Loud equals to Observable Work plus Narrating Your Work. Several professionals engage in this practice and it’s a goldmine of insights & stories as they are getting shaped. Following these professionals on social platforms can enable you to learn at the speed of the business. This involves learning from success & failures as they happen. It’s also a good idea to start engaging in this practice over a period of time which is at the heart of social learning. When you share your work and stories openly, you invite comments, opinions & critique all of which can be value adds. Retrospect may provide some good reflection opportunity but often fails to match the speed that the changing business landscape demands.
Give to get
Don’t expect instant results. Establish a series of meaningful conversations with your peers online before reaching out for help. Contribution could even mean endorsing other’s views, sharing insights, asking questions and being an enthusiastic member in the community. Communities thrive on meaningful people & meaningful conversations so ensure that you are a part of either of the two.
There’s enough advisory online on making the most of social media but everyone must remember that an eager learner always takes the cake, while an eager teacher is only a good to have. This is true for making the most of social networks.