Why is networking important to your success?
Often the most connected people are the most successful. When you invest in your relationships (professional and personal), it can pay you back in dividends throughout the course of your career. Networking will help you develop and improve your skill set, stay on top of the latest trends in your industry, keep a pulse on the job market, meet prospective mentors, partners, clients and gain access to the necessary resources that will cultivate your career development.
LinkedIn has added some great features to help you improve your networking ability when you are at your next networking event, namely QR Codes and Find Nearby. Let’s take a closer look at each one in further detail and how to successfully use them in a networking situation.
LinkedIn QR Codes
LinkedIn QR codes enable you to connect with a new person and share your profile with them on the spot. It’s a much better way of securing your new connections than passing out business cards (eco-friendly too). By scanning a QR code with the LinkedIn mobile app, you can connect with people immediately when you meet them (both parties must have the LinkedIn app installed). Once on their profile, you can write a personalised connection message, reminding them that you just met at the event and would like to connect.
How to scan or share a QR code
2. Tap SCAN and ensure that you enable the camera access on your device. Hold your mobile device directly above the LinkedIn member’s QR code that you’d like to connect with. Once the LinkedIn member’s QR code has been scanned, you will be redirected to their profile page where you can add them as a connection.
3. To find your own LinkedIn QR code, tap on MY CODE. If you would like to share your code you can click on SHARE MY CODE. You can also save your code to your personal photos by clicking on SAVE TO GALLERY.
You can try this feature right now by scanning my LinkedIn QR code above.
LinkedIn ‘Find Nearby’ Feature
With ‘Find Nearby’ you’ll be able to network more efficiently, as you will see people who also have the feature enabled and who are within your Bluetooth range. The feature works well at conferences and events to help you locate people in your close proximity.
For your privacy, you’ll need to opt-in to use this feature and enable Bluetooth sharing. When ‘Find Nearby’ is turned on, other members can discover you, even when you aren’t using the LinkedIn mobile app. To prevent other members from discovering you, switch the Find Nearby feature off.
With this feature, you can find, connect and build relationships with leads who are within 30 metres (100 feet) of you, enabling you to generate more leads on LinkedIn.
How to use the ‘Find Nearby’ Feature
Activate Bluetooth on your mobile device and tap the My Network icon.
Tap Find nearby at the top of the screen where you will be prompted to allow LinkedIn to access location, microphone, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and other functionalities on your mobile device. Follow the prompts, or go directly to your settings to update your preferences.
Please Note: LinkedIn will not receive any details of your location or connection data or audio recordings for this feature. This is because the data processing is done on your mobile device itself, not on LinkedIn servers.
Once you’ve enabled Bluetooth sharing, discover others on the Find Nearby screen (you will also be discoverable until you turn off Find Nearby). You will be able to see a list of people who currently have the Find Nearby feature on. Tap the name of the member’s profile you want to view and connect with.
It’s never too early, or too late, to invest in your network. The best way to improve your networking skills is to put yourself out there and make a concerted effort. Making an effort, each day, to meet someone new, learn something different and start building up a new network of information is crucial and using the above LinkedIn features will greatly improve your success rate of networking.
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