LinkedIn may not be quite as big as Facebook, but it has around 250 million active monthly users, and it’s an ideal site for connecting with other restaurant industry pros. This professional networking site gets your name and business in front of existing and potential clients, vendors and partners. Below are five simple LinkedIn tips to boost your restaurant management network.
Build Out Your Professional Profile
A professional, eye-catching LinkedIn profile is key to connecting with the right people. Think of your LinkedIn profile as more than just an online resume; it’s a reflection of your personal and professional brand. Education, job experience, skills, certifications, recommendations from colleagues and even volunteer work all shine a light on who you are in your industry. Spend time on the summary section—including career highlights and achievements—upload a professional headshot for your profile picture, and create a custom profile URL.
Make Connections the Right Way
Your goal is to connect to as many people as possible in restaurant management, but that doesn’t just mean doing a search for “restaurant management” and sending requests to every name that pops up. First, you need some personal connections to give your profile legitimacy in the eyes of other LinkedIn users. Send connection requests to friends, family, school peers, and current and former colleagues, and allow LinkedIn to use your email contacts to find new connections for you. Once you’ve built up a base, it’s easy to boost your restaurant management network.
Use LinkedIn’s Search Feature to Connect
LinkedIn lets users search for connections by industry or job title. Start by sending a few connection requests to restaurant professionals in your area. Once you’ve connected with a few, branch out and send personalized requests to their connections, and so on. Users are more likely to accept your request if you have mutual connections. You may also begin receiving connection requests of your own. But be selective, and watch out for spammers. The more connections you have, the more spam requests you’ll get. And these can hurt your credibility and fill your feed with useless chatter.
Grow Your Network with Groups
LinkedIn’s groups are one of the more social aspects of the site. They’re a great place to interact directly with other industry professionals and make new connections. You’ll have to dig through the many spam and abandoned groups to find an active networking opportunity, but once you’re in, you can grow your network quickly with quality connections. Just make sure you offer members something of value and don’t use the group to send mass connection requests.
Stay Active to Nurture Your Network
There’s no point in building up your network just to walk away from the site a month later. Interact with your connections, share content regularly and comment on articles posted by your connections. Engage in conversations and follow companies in your industry to remain current on the latest news and announcements relevant to the restaurant world.
Ready to Take Your Career to the Next Level?
An active LinkedIn network is valuable for boosting your restaurant management network. The connections you make on the site can open doors and change your life. Want other networking tips to grow your career? Gecko Hospitality specializes in the restaurant industry. Contact us today!