I’m so happy to introduce you to our newest Advisory Board Member and Contributor, Melanie Peskoe. Melanie is passionate about career paths for middle aged women and it makes perfect sense that her first article would be about LinkedIn.
When I first met Melanie last year I felt an immediate connection to her yet I never imagined we would meet in person. So unbeknownst to me, when I agreed to speak at the AFB (American Foundation for the Blind) Leadership Conference, Melanie Peskoe would be my handler. I think it’s safe to say that both of us were over the moon to connect and have the opportunity to learn more about each other.
Melanie has such a sparkling personality with added the gift of drawing people in. Bold Blind Beauty is so fortunate to count her as one of our brilliant team members. So without further ado, it’s my honor to introduce Melanie’s first post here at Bold Blind Beauty. ~Steph
What’s All The Buzz About LinkedIn?
By now most people have at least heard of LinkedIn, but many people still scratch their heads and wonder what it’s really about. Let’s look at that – what exactly LinkedIn is and why you may want to be there.
Think of LinkedIn as a digital home for your resume. The great thing about having a digital home for your resume is that when your resume changes, you can change that information online and it’s immediately visible to everyone in your network.
Speaking of your network, LinkedIn is a fantastic way to build your professional network! From high school and college peers to people in your current workplace (and beyond), you can connect with literally anyone who also has a profile on LinkedIn. When you search for someone on the platform, you’ll see that they’re either a 1st, 2nd, or 3rd level connection – think Kevin Bacon and the 6 Degrees of Separation movie.
Say you’re at a conference and you meet some really great people from other companies who you’d like to stay connected with. On LinkedIn you can send a connection request similar to a friend request on Facebook. What’s even better is that you can send a note with your request to remind them how you met, or explain why you’d like to connect.
Increase Your Visibility On LinkedIn
Once you’re on LinkedIn and you’ve optimized your profile (I’ll be doing an upcoming blog on this topic too!) you can work on positioning yourself as a thought leader or content creator, which will increase your visibility and lead to more connections. There are a couple of ways to establish yourself on the platform and I actually recommend both.
First, you can interact with people by reading their content and liking it or commenting on it. LinkedIn isn’t like Facebook in that you just scroll by all the posts and click the like button. Block out some time to actually read posts and the articles that may be linked to the post. If you like it, click like. If you have a thought about it, thoughtfully create a comment. If you do this regularly people will start to see your name and look at your profile.
The second way you can get your “LinkedIn Cred” is to create your own content or share others’ content. If you happen across an article somewhere, copy the link and paste it into a post with some thoughts about the article. Even better is to pose a question to your readers to encourage them to comment on your post.
There are many other ways you can engage and hone your skills on LinkedIn. There are companies you can follow for updates, there are groups you can join on professional topics that are of interest to you, and there are also courses and exams you can take to get a LinkedIn certification in a particular skill.
There is so much about LinkedIn that can really give your career a boost. The misconception is that the only people on the platform are those looking for a job. This couldn’t be further from the truth. Millions of people are on LinkedIn to build a network of professional peers, mentors, and to become more knowledgeable about the workforce they’re in. I love this platform and use it every day. I’m not looking for a job, but I love learning and connecting with people and LinkedIn is a great way for me to do that. Stay tuned for my next blog which will be all about rocking your LinkedIn profile!
Like what you’ve read and want to chat about it? Join us in the Bold Blind Beauty Facebook group.
Melanie Peskoe is a vivaciously, middle-age, blind woman, and a professional late bloomer having started her career in her 40’s! She currently works as the Public Policy and Research Coordinator with the American Foundation for the Blind. In addition to her roles as Bold Blind Beauty Career Contributor and Advisory Board member, Melanie is a VisionAware Peer Advisor and many of her blog posts can be found there as well. Born and raised in Louisville, Kentucky, Melanie has two older kids, and loves to crochet and read (preferably at the same time!)
Connecting With Melanie
- The header is a cropped image of a cell phone with the LinkedIn logo on the screen is on a desk with pens, tablet and earbuds.
- “Set yourself up for visibility and success” is written under torn paper.
- Author bio photo is a headshot of Melanie her light brown hair is styled in a fashionable bob and she’s wearing red lip color with a black v-neck top.