Elegant in its simplicity, LinkedIn is the preferred networking site for over 40 million business professionals across the globe. So when I was asked to review a book about LinkedIn, my first question was: given the site’s simplicity, how do you write a whole book on it? The answer lies in Patrice-Anne Rutledge’s book, Sam’s Teach Yourself LinkedIn in 10 Minutes.
Now, before I get to the review, please allow me to preface this with one small factoid: I have never received much benefit from my participation on the site. As it turns out, there was a very good reason for that. I had no idea how to use LinkedIn effectively. As one who is daily immersed in a complex online world, I have no idea what to do with simplicity. None whatsoever. I found myself constantly looking for some magic button that would reveal the arcane depths that made LI so powerful for so many. Let me state this plainly: after reading the book I have discovered the truth: there is no button. It really is that simple.
Sam’s Teach Yourself LinkedIn in 10 Minutes is an excellent book for getting the most out of LinkedIn, whether you are new to the site or an old hand. Ms. Rutledge takes you through all the basic “click here, fill in that” actions of stetting up and maintaining your profile, then shows you how to use that simplicity to get results.
Having made this startling realization I summarily deleted my account and, following the book’s instructions page by page, created a brand new profile. This time my profile would be tailored to specific objectives, instead of the unfocused mish-mash I had struggled with previously. I found it helpful to think of LinkedIn as a game of checkers. Simple moves, yet capable of great depths of strategy and play. It all depends on the skill of the player.
Following the advice given in the first few pages, I recreated my profile with the specific objective of gaining employment. While it is too early to tell what kind of results I will get, just starting out with a strategy is immensely helpful. Having a focus and plan for your LI profile is the foundation of getting the most out of the site.
The rest of the book follows in similar format, walking you through the how and what, and then supplementing with strategies and tips to maximize your experience and results. I wish that I could tell you more about Sam’s Teach Yourself LinkedIn in 10 Minutes, but like the site itself, it really is that simple. In that simplicity lies its power, a power that I am still trying to wrap my mind around. However, with the help of this book, I think that I may have a fighting chance of doing just that. More to the point, this book provides me the chance of getting some real results. Simple.