Here I discuss the most relevant social media site to my career, LinkedIn, and how it has helped me in my professional life. What social media sites have you found helpful to your career in instructional design or elsewhere?
Like most of you, I view LinkedIn as a professional tool. I originally didn't give it much thought beyond being a digital webpage version of my resume, but over time I have had some great benefits to my career as a result of taking advantage of its many features. I used to only use it when I needed to look for another job. When you are seeing a job posting on LInkedIn, you can search through your linkedin connections to determine if you know anyone working there and would be willing to put in a good word, or help make sure your resume is seen.
Now I try to use LinkedIn more as a social network. First off, it's a great tool to help me get to know my colleagues, clients, and classmates. Groups offer a wealth of opportunity to connect with like-minded people on topics interesting to you. Group members can share experience, articles, news, and events with each other. By virtue of being a member of certain groups, LinkedIn also sends me other groups or articles about topic X I may find interesting. Although nothing replaces a face-to-face, with it being more challenging for like-minded professionals to travel and connect in person and with less live events in general it seems, these groups have really been helpful for learning and sharing. Bonus: Group members can message each other, even if they're not connected individually on LinkedIn.
Here's an interesting article on how to harness more from groups on LinkedIn, if you're looking for more info on the topic.
One way I am looking forward to extending the usefulness of LinkedIn for me professionally is with postings related to my field of expertise. I don't do any postings on LinkedIn in groups or from the homepage (articles, photos, or share an update) but I can see how through this class exposing us to a lot more articles from various sites and also helping us build a website to then blog on our field, I will have a lot more material to contribute to the social communities I am building.