Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Social Experiment - Part 1 - Shift Your Perspective

LinkedIn, the social networking phenomenon, is adding one new member per second, and with 90MM current users, including several million from a wide range of professional service firms, it is a valuable resource that is an essential part of any professional’s growth strategy. That is why professional services firm leaders are engaging Patricia Romboletti, a Principal with Creative Growth Group |Managing Director of Creative Growth Talent | and a bona fide LinkedIn Guru, to share her custom program, “Six LinkedIn Steps to Professional Services Growth in 2011.”

In this posting, we provide you with one quick tip from Patricia’s repository of social networking knowledge:

Shift Your Perspective from Online to Offline:   Instead of treating your time on LinkedIn as an interaction with a website or social networking tool, consider LinkedIn as a “live event.”

LinkedIn is, in fact, a global, 24/7 live relationship-building event. To make the most of your online time on LinkedIn, think offline.

In most ways, being on LinkedIn is just like the events you attend locally for your favorite business association or conference. Typically, when you enter a live event, you start by looking for people that you already know, people with whom you would like to begin a dialogue, and people with whom you have some clear and immediate affinity. Once you engage in a conversation with those people, you begin to look for common interests, common styles of doing business, a similar approach to serving clients—any common ground, both business and personal. When you approach LinkedIn from this perspective, your own natural relationship-building instincts will guide you to make better use of this resource.

And, if you really understand the most effective approach to business development, especially for any trusted advisor, you begin to look for ways that you might be able to assist each person. For instance, what people or resources can you connect them with that would be of benefit to them?

And remember, just like at any live event, all the rules of good business etiquette apply while on LinkedIn. Your presence and actions on LinkedIn must be authentic and consistent with your personal brand and your firm’s brand.

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