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LinkedIn—Your Toolkit for Success

I am excited to write my very first article, which is surprisingly on the role of LinkedIn and the impact it has on my life. I might not have written this article; instead I could have written something related to my lovely field of petroleum engineering, but I guess at this moment I should address the most frequently asked question by my beloved friends.

Attention: The whole content is based on my personal opinion and experience.

LinkedIn Addiction

Many people, especially my friends and colleagues often ask me for the reason I have been so active on LinkedIn most of the time. They ask, “What really makes you stay there for so long as we get bored using it for a longer period of time and it is of no use as far as job hunting is concerned. And we don't find it as interesting as other social applications like Facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat.”

Reasons To Be Active on LinkedIn

I will try to keep it simple by explaining to my connections the logic behind my affection and endearment for this platform.

  1. Career Counseling

  2. Showcase your talent

  3. Professional Environment

  4. Get your field related queries addressed quickly

  5. Interview preparations

  6. SPE Membership Renewal

  7. Successful Master's Research Project

  8. Job offer

I will take you to all the points mentioned above:

Career counseling. The first and foremost reason which keeps me motivated to stay active on LinkedIn is the people's sincere suggestions and guidelines that directly or indirectly helps me understand myself and the world of work in order to make career, educational, and life decisions.

Showcase your Talent. It is human nature that when we are applauded and appreciated on our achievement we feel happy. I believe LinkedIn provides the best ever podium to showcase your talent and helps you reach the relevant people in your field, either in the shape of projects, research publication, articles, or any of the tasks you have achieved and feel proud of. This encouragement from field professionals highly motivates the person to do more in their field of interest.

Professional environment. I am fortunate enough to have such positive and field-oriented professionals in my connections, which makes me feel the pleasure of being a petroleum engineer. I was thinking about how to get rid of the irrelevant posts in my LinkedIn timeline which divert my focus/concentration. So I made a decision that I will only accept or send request connections to those who are relevant to my field of study. This allows me to have an eye on every latest technology, its understanding, and application in my field through their useful posts; above all to have a look at the success stories of petroleum engineering. Surprisingly, it works perfectly for me and if you do this practice it will surely work for you as well.

Get your field related queries addressed quickly. I find this feature in using LinkedIn absolutely awesome. Say, you have the conceptual question in your mind but there is no expert in that field among your university or friend’s circle to answer it, and even Google search engine fails to answer it—no worries, as you are already connected with a variety of industry experts on LinkedIn who have diversified expertise in all aspects of petroleum engineering, they can help you get to the answers with the best possible explanation and without any charges.

Interview preparation. Imagine you have been called for an interview and you are curious to know what they are going to ask in the interview, who will be the panelist, how should I prepare myself to stand out from others. Nothing to worry about, simply look into your connection list who are working in that company and get in touch with them to have your answers. Here, I would like to personally share my experience. I recently got an interview call from one of the renowned exploration and production companies of Pakistan. I searched my connections for someone who are or have worked in that company at the key positions like general managers, managers, and chief engineers. Luckily, I was connected with Amjad Yazdanie in my contacts, who called me all the way from Texas to share interview tricks and techniques, which really helped me make a wonderful impression on the interview panelists.

SPE membership renewal. How will you feel when your professional international membership for SPE is renewed at no cost. Isn't it amazing? The then SPE President Darcy Spady was in my connection list. I reached out to him to discuss the issue that my SPE membership is going to expire and I didn't have the money to pay the fees but at the same time, I wanted to continue my membership so as to take maximum advantages from there offers. He talked to SPE staff and connected me to them. From there, SPE staff introduced me to the different options available for membership renewal for my situation, including the recent graduate and dues waiver programs. Current SPE President Shauna Noonan is also in my connection list and we  have good conversations on the latest development in our field. The story doesn't end there as while attending the world's biggest oil and gas conference, ADIPEC, which was held in Abu Dhabi, I got the chance to meet President Spady and thanked him for connecting me with SPE staff.

Successful master's research project. Back in 2017, I was working on the master's thesis on "Feasibility of Solar Generated Steam Injection in Heavy Oil Reservoirs in Pakistan." During that time I was working on thermal reservoir simulators and was facing difficulties in making the programing file and with the input data formats. I didn't find anyone who could particularly help me with this problem as none of them was capable or didn't have the experience of using it. I started looking into my connections for help and as it is said;

“We don't meet people by accident. They are meant to cross our path for a reason.”

Alexey Sokolov from Russia who is an experienced reservoir engineer was the man who helped me throughout my research project with the programing problems despite his  previous commitments and tight schedule. He didn't only make me understand every bit in detail but also verified my simulation results without asking any favor in return. Steven Geiger from Russia, who is the founder and president of Innova Partners, and Imtiaz Ali Memon from Pakistan who is working as chief reservoir engineer helped me out with the related case studies and provided me the required solar thermal enhanced oil recovery data. Temoor Muther, who is my senior, friend, and brother helped me with the rest of the work. With their guidance and my efforts I successfully defended my master's thesis.

Job offer. I know every one of you is mainly interested to know how can a person, especially a fresh graduate, can get the job through this platform. It is a fact that everyone wants to see him/herself in a better position and for that one must put continuous effort to look for a better opportunity.

Let me share with you my story of how I get the job through this platform. It was 9 July 2019, 10:40 PM on the clock when I got the message from the company’s director of operation who was in my connections list already which read:

 "Dear Haris Ahmed, we have an opportunity for you to work with Vizdom Drilling Solution as Trainee Petroleum Engineer in Islamabad. We are conducting an interview for it. Please share your latest résumé. Also, share your availability for an interview/presentation at our Islamabad office." 

That was the serotonin moment for me and made me feel very good as I was not expecting that job offer or neither had I approached him for the job. It might be because of my up-to-date LinkedIn profile, mutual connections, my activities and posts that got me the offer.

In a nutshell, it can be concluded that if the person is using this platform in a right way, he/she can be benefited from the numerous advantages that I have mentioned above and even more. Having said that, it is very necessary to have good communication skills, which will not only help you to have an impact on the other person, but you can also win the hearts of people.

"If you just communicate you can get by. But if you communicate skillfully, you can work miracles."

My LinkedIn Heros

I want to dedicate this article to my LinkedIn contacts below who have not only supported me at the time of need but have always been there to motivate me and encouraged my work in all aspects.

[The article was originally published by the author on his LinkedIn profile.]

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