Tips to Utilize LinkedIn for a D&I Junior
Diversity and inclusion is a rapidly growing field and job opportunities are always popping up. Unfortunately, even though there are many positions, often times, it goes to individuals who have years of experience in D&I work. So does this mean there's no hope for people starting out in this space? Absolutely not!
I've had the pleasure of talking to many leaders in the D&I space and have compiled for you the tips and advice I have received. While they may not necessary land you a D&I job right away, it will definitely get people to take note of you. Below are some tactics on LinkedIn to get you started in the D&I space.
- Actively like and respond to articles/posts on LinkedIn about D&I
- Make sure your comments are insightful; add your own conclusion/finding
- Write posts on LinkedIn or start a blog (ex: what I'm doing right now!)
- Use hashtags that align with the D&I space to boost visibility/engagement
When your visibility on LinkedIn increases, more and more people will take note of you. This can help favorably when you're looking for a job. Insightful comments and posts will prove that you are a leader in this field with a lot to share.
- Reach out to folks on LinkedIn who have job titles similar to what you want
- Always personalize your request!
- Don't blindly ask for referrals - the likelihood of this approach working is very little
- Make friendly conversation with people - people are more than just their job title
- Reach out to recruiters and inquire about D&I roles
- Attend D&I events (both virtual and in-person)
- Ask people you have talked to for names of others you should talk to
The most stressed upon advice I have ever received is how to network on LinkedIn. If someone has a role you are interested in, reach out to them. Ask how they got that role and for advice on what you can do. The worst a person can do is say no :) Remember that if you are looking at networking as just an opportunity to further your career prospects, it doesn't work. People on LinkedIn are more than just their job title. You don't want to just blindly ask for a referral.
- Attend webinars centering D&I
- Join LinkedIn groups for D&I Professionals (Ex: D&I Juniors)
- Try your hand at a certification course
- Don't just like a post to create visibility, actually read and absorb the information in it
- Try to read an article a week centered around D&I
- Tailor your LinkedIn feed so you get exposure to more D&I articles and research
- Read companies diversity reports
My favorite thing about networking was the transformation of my LinkedIn feed. I went from having little to no articles or posts about D&I to almost every post centering around it. For someone starting out, it was super important because I suddenly had access to all this information. I made it a point to read through these articles and learn about the jargon that was central to D&I work.
With all this said, the most important piece of advice I received was that there is no perfect way to use LinkedIn. All these tips I've shared have been useful but are by no means the only way LinkedIn can be utilized. Comment on things that have nothing to do with your field, share articles that make you happy. Don't fall into this trap of engagement and visibility and believe your activity feed has to be completely centered around your field. There is no "perfect" way to use LinkedIn and that's the best part about it.