We conclude our 3 part series regarding what job search tool gives you the highest probability of success to land that dream job after you have a best in class resume, LinkedIn profile and cover letter.

Effective networking online with LinkedIn is the #1 job search tool.  Part 1 discussed leveraging your college/university alumnus; Part 2 discussed leveraging your former employer alumnus.

Part 3 of this series discusses leveraging LinkedIn professionals with whom you share a common contact to request a coffee or conversation for career advice (informational interviews) for your dream job. Having these informational interviews can help you establish an advocate on the inside, a huge leg up on the competition.

In LinkedIn terminology, if you and the professional you are seeking to speak with both have a common contact, you and the professional are “2nd connections”

LinkedIn allows you to easily search and sort by your 2nd connections.  If the professional you are trying to reach really knows the common contact (and likes him/her), there is a high probability that the professional will extend you a conversation.

Even if the professional does not know the common contact well, they may still extend you a conversation since there is a common perception you both “travel in the same circles”.  If the professional hates the common contact, well, you may be out of luck.  LinkedIn doesn’t have that sort feature yet!

Bonus: Do you know if you search LinkedIn and sort by 3rd connections only, you will see 2nd connections that will never appear if you had just searched for 2nd connections alone! Huh?

In fact, in my daily searches for clients to arrange informational interviews, I sometimes find two, three or four times as many 2nd connections this way!

If you are curious as to why this is the case, email me at mmittleman@careerservicesplus.com for a really interesting answer.

In conclusion of this 3 part series, connecting with and asking for a conversation with college/university and former employer alumni, along with 2nd connections is the highest probability tacit you can employ to get your dream job (another bad pun).