Sunday, August 5, 2012

(3) Week 1: Create your digital presence

The aim of our first week is to make sure you have an online professional presence that accurately represents you.

Many people are reluctant to post information about themselves, their interests, employment or achievements online. However, your online presence is a significant component of your professional identity.

Have you ever Googled someone you were recruiting or interviewing? Increasingly, employers and colleagues are researching prospective colleagues and employees online, and in particular, LinkedIn. So having an accurate and up-to-date profile is vital. You may also promote the areas of expertise in which you offer consultation services or types of projects on which you are seeking to collaborate.

So.. managing your digital presence is an important 21st century skill. By the end of this post, you will have mastered it, and earned your Digital Presence badge!

What is digital presence?
Your digital presence is affected by several things, including:
Consistency: the consistency, currency and accuracy of the information about you, your work history and your professional interests.  Little or out of date information makes a statement too
Networks: the people you are linked to (e.g. in LinkedIn) and interact with online
Participation: your level of contribution, engagement and sharing

What do I do to manage my digital presence?

Task iconActivity 1.1: Research your CURRENT digital presence
Google yourself (tip: use quote marks around your whole name so Google searches the whole search string).
What do you find? Is it an accurate representation of your professional identity? LinkedIn is the first search result of any of the social networks that displays - so let's set up your LinkedIn profile.

Task icon 
Activity 1.2: View some profiles on LinkedIn
- Gie Liem, Luana Main, Andrew Dawson, Brad Aisbett,
- Beverley Oliver
- prior students now working in the School and who are skillful digital practitioners: James Janssen, Jenny Baker
- others you know...

Question icon

So... a question...
what do Activities 1.1 and 1.2 suggest to you about what sort of professional information you would like to make available?

What is LinkedIn?
Watch this video first (just ignore the last promotional sentence or two!)

Activity 1.3: Set up a LinkedIn profile 

Task iconStep 1: Join LinkedIn.  
Step 2: Fill in your profile: firstly, watch the video below

Step 3: Now to create your profile, click Profile > Edit profile.
and here is a video with some tips.
Step 4: Add experience: add your jobs for the last 10 years. (Click Profile > Add a current position. Then add your previous jobs.)
Step 5: Build your network: request 5 people to link to you (this is important!).
Go to Contacts > Add connections > Colleagues. Try friends, people in SENS, or colleagues in other Schools or Universities. Another strategy to link to people you know is to search the Connections of those you link to. 

LinkedIn is a serious, professional environment, so it is recommended that your profile and any other content meets the following criteria:
1. Concise - brief, clear and important details only
2. Compelling - tells a coherent  story of your skills, strengths and experience.
3. Professional - well presented information using correct terminology (look at others' profiles in your field, ask colleagues for feedback)

Optional: Rearrange your profile elements
This video (link) shows you how to rearrange the elements on your profile to highlight particular components:

Level up iconLEVEL UP! - (definition here
For those who have completed tasks 1.1 - 1.3
Join five groups on LinkedIn: go to GROUPS > Groups you may like. OR GROUPS > Search
Some groups you may wish to join:
- Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (link)
- Exercise and Sports Science Australia (link)
- Fitness Australia (link)
This video below explains how to use LinkedIn Groups (link)

Well done! You have now earned the badge:

You can now add this skill - your first badge! - to your Digital Toolkit (see your pigeon hole over the next few days).

Please contribute to this blog by sharing your learning... add any comments about your experience of building your digital presence in the Comments box below.

Efficiency tip: Get a good profile photo.
Find a good photo of yourself to use on LinkedIn, Yammer and some of the other communities. You may need to crop it to fit in some sites' restrictions. Irfanview is a free tool that allows you to crop images, but there is also a tool on your computer called the Snipping Tool: go to Windows > All programs > Accessories > Snipping Tool.


  1. HI Susie,
    Think I may have just got my first badge! How does linkedin suggest contacts - little spooky when the past reappears! Has anyone tried researchgate and found it useful? Plus didn't understand profile thing below so I think I am anonymously Lynn

  2. This comment has been removed by the author.

  3. Hi Lynn,
    thanks for taking the plunge and making a comment, that's great. That's what the blog format is for - to generate conversation. Interesting to think about how our students could use blogs...

    Congratulations on achieving your badge, that's super, and thanks for the link on LinkedIn. I see you (and Alison!) have joined the group Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. And it will be even better when you get your profile photo up as well ;-)

    Yes on most blogs you are required to set up an account to post comments. This is to stop spam. I have now changed the settings on this blog so that everyone will have to set up or log in to a Google account to comment. It's a bit of a hassle I guess but better than having nuisance comments on the blog.

    thanks again for jumping in :-)

  4. Hi.

    Two additional LinkedIn groups that might be worth trying are;
    - Physiology Laboratory Teaching Forum
    - Sport and Exercise Professionals Network


  5. Thanks so much for sharing these Dan, they look like useful groups with some interesting conversations going on. I see a few other SENS colleagues in the Physiology Laboratory Teaching Form too - Karen Salter, Stuart Warmington.

    Also, just to let others know, to follow those groups, you can search for Dan's LinkedIn profile to easily click on the groups he is following.