You've decided you need a new job, but a daunting laundry list holds you back: You have to update your resumé, assemble your portfolio, gather references, and revise your LinkedIn profile, to start. Plus, you're still employed full time. Overwhelmed yet?
That feeling is normal, says LinkedIn career expert Nicole Williams: "Starting a job search is very stressful. You are throwing yourself in a situation that is unknown and scary. You need to make sure what you have to offer is up to par."
LinkedIn, with more than 277 million users worldwide, has become recruiters' and head-hunters' go-to resource for finding top talent. The content in your profile and your actions on the social network could influence whether or not you land the job of your dreams.
[Want to keep your job search private? Read 5 LinkedIn Privacy Settings For Job Hunters.]
Approach your job search in small chunks, Williams says. "Any time you try to do it all, you tend to do a lousy job at everything. You need to section off your job search and set up goals."
On day one, for example, you may take 10 minutes to upload your best Slideshare presentations to your profile. On day two, you might ask a handful of your closest colleagues and former coworkers for recommendations. On day three, you might upload a blog post -- one of LinkedIn's newest features on the platform -- to showcase your industry knowledge and advice.
"[These] literally let your work speak for itself," Williams says. "Having other people vouch for your work ethic and skills are huge pluses in this type of job market. [In publishing a blog post] not only are you leading a conversation, you are becoming an industry leader and influencer."
Starting your job search doesn't need to be stressful. Here's a look at 10 things you can do in 10 minutes to ready yourself and your LinkedIn profile for the next opportunity.
1. Update your profile picture.
Upload a profile picture to increase the chances that others click on your profile. According to the professional social network, people are seven times more likely to view your profile if you include one.
To add or update yours, click Edit Profile from the navigation options at the top and click the camera icon to the left of your name. On the following page, browse your files for the photo you want and set the privacy settings for your picture. Everyone can see your picture by default; LinkedIn doesn't recommend you change this setting.Kristin Burnham currently serves as InformationWeek.com's Senior Editor, covering social media, social business, IT leadership and IT careers. Prior to joining InformationWeek in July 2013, she served in a number of roles at CIO magazine and CIO.com, most recently as senior ... View Full Bio