Saturday, January 14, 2012

A Break from the Norm: Blessed Are the Works of Our Hands

The first job ever assigned was by God, and was assigned to Adam in the Garden of Eden. Adam's job was to "tend and keep the garden." (Genesis 2:15) The Bible tells us in 2 Thessalonians 3:10 that if a man doesn't work, neither shall he eat. God tells us that He will bless the works of our hands (Deuteronomy 16:15), and that our works are to glorify Him. Further, we are to "work as unto the Lord" (Colossians 3:23-24). That is a condition to the works of our hands being blessed!

One great resource for knowing what the Lord says about work can be found in on GotQuestions, one of my go-to sites for questions I have and a place where I can usually find more scriptures to supplement my own study.

For anyone currently unemployed looking for a job - or employed looking for a better job - your 
LinkedIn headline can make all the difference in whether your profile gets viewed. The more views, the better the chances that someone will contact you for work. If you Google the words "write linkedin headline" you will get a list of helpful articles and sites that instruct on how to write effective LinkedIn headlines and profiles. These sites give good examples and tips, as well as reasons why to write a captivating headline: You want your profile to stand out and be noticed. Your headline should tell a short story about who you are.

Here are six of the articles I read (yes, I actually read them!), but there are a LOT more in the Google list:
I have, by the grace of God, been with my current employer for a number of years and have plans to actually (someday) retire from there, unless the Lord has other plans (Jeremiah 29:11). But by exercising some of the tips I read in the links above, I was quite surprised to have received a lead for an executive assistant position only hours after creating my LinkedIn profile.

Another way to make the most of your LinkedIn profile is to build "connections" by importing your contacts. You've likely already done this, and even if you have, you may want to do it again. By importing your contacts you have the option to send an invitation to people you normally communicate with. This will help populate your connections - or increase the numbers of your connections - and of course the more people you're connected with, the greater the chance you'll come across someone who might be able to assist you in getting a job (think "Six Degrees of Separation"). Also, by importing again, you're reaching out to contacts who may have received your initial invitation and forgot to respond.

Last but not least - a picture is worth more than you may think! While you may not particularly like your picture "out there," giving prospective employers the opportunity to connect the face with the profile can be a great asset. A picture that reflects who you are, the type of industry you're in, professional or low-key, can be beneficial. For example, if you're looking for a position as an executive assistant or something in marketing, you'll want your picture to reflect a polished professional (i.e., suit, tie, dress, as opposed to a sweatshirt or t-shirt). Putting yourself in the position of the potential employer, ask this question: "Why would I click on this profile that doesn't include a picture? Is the person trying to hide something?" And for the profile that does have a picture, does the picture match the profile (i.e., professional appearance for a management position)?

Keeping in mind your desire to find work, or be promoted to a better position, continue to pray and seek God's will for your life. Ask Him for direction, even with regard to writing your LinkedIn headline and profile. You're unique, created by God, in His image and likeness (Genesis 1:27). Your headline should reflect who you are!