Have you checked your online presence recently? Today we are all very connected to various social media channels, personal websites, and even searchable portfolios of mentions and articles.
Yet, somehow, many disability leaders are quite hard to find on the internet, including many Disability Leadership Institute members and National Register listers.
If you are hoping to find the right board opportunity, regular consulting work, or if you are currently seeking formal employment then it’s vital that you can be found through a google or LinkedIn search.
There is a strong presence of people with disabilities in social areas like Facebook, but very few have a strong profile or professional presence that can be used by prospective employers who want to know more about your work history, connections, or public profile. Why should you be employed as a conference MC, or a workshop facilitator? If no one can find you then they won’t employ you and you’ll keep waiting. Some people use Facebook for their personal website or landing page, so make sure it reflects your professional persona and not your social life if you are relying on it for this purpose.
If you don’t have a personal website or formal business, then the only real option is to have an up to date LinkedIn profile. Then you can be found and your information shared easily.
Keep your LinkedIn profile up to date. It is the most common search vehicle for finding professionals. Target your profile to the type of work you are currently seeking, you don’t have to tell your life story, or have a biography that covers every detail, focus on the relevant elements to the work you are looking for now. Even when you are not currently looking for opportunities your profile is a good way to keep you at the front of people’s minds for when the right type of opportunity comes along. You never know what’s out there and what might come your way.
Of course you also need to check in regularly, just like other social media, because if someone messages you they won’t wait forever for a reply. You are one of hundreds of qualified people and everyone else is actively promoting themselves. Unless you do the same you will be waiting a long time.
Regardless of the platform you prefer for your online presence you must keep it updated and refreshed regularly. If it looks old and stale then it’s clear you aren’t “out there” actively. This rapidly becomes a statement about the kind of person you are and the level of engagement that can be expected from you.
If we want to see more disability leaders appointed across all fields then we need to be present in the mainstream market places that are used to find the right people. Get your profile up to date today!