By Maddie Mondell
The Career Center hosted an informational luncheon Sept. 17 to teach students how to break into the business world through LinkedIn, a social media site for business. On Sept. 17, Aaron Clark, a consultant at Heidrick & Struggles, a leadership consulting firm, spoke to over 50 students about how LinkedIn has completely changed the hiring process for businesses.
Professional portraits were an addition to the event which students could then use for their new LinkedIn profile. Students came for the headshots and stayed for the insight offered about a tool that could potentially give them an edge in the business world.
LinkedIn, described by Clark as a “professional version of Facebook,” started in 2004. In just 10 years, LinkedIn now has over 250 million members and has opened up the business industry to a broad range of clients to be hired—from Fortune 500 to small businesses. This makes a LinkedIn profile an essential tool for young job seekers.
“LinkedIn is the most disruptive technology to the business industry,” he said.
LinkedIn has leveled the playing field for those who are beginning to break into the business industry. It is the number-one tool to market yourself and can serve as a “virtual handshake” to potential employers, according to Clark.
This technology has enabled businesses to create new, cost-effective, in-house hiring companies. With websites like LinkedIn, clients are able to connect directly to companies, becoming competition for corporate headhunters like Heidrick & Struggles that have been around for more than 60 years.
As a consultant with the Global Sales Officers Practice at Heidrick & Struggles, Clark’s work includes senior-level sales and general management searches in both large and small businesses. Clark’s job involves finding replacements for upper-level management positions in companies, making Clark an expert in knowing what companies want in potential employees. Clark is also the brother of Chris Clark, associate professor of Communication Studies.
Associate Director of Career Services Chelsea Zimmerman planned the informational luncheon to help students be better prepared for life after graduation.