By Brian Murray In October of 2012 Linkedin introduced the ability for users to follow thought leaders. It is an exclusive club of movers and shakers in a variety of industries. You can check out the leaderboard to find everything from who has the most followers to the most engaged posts. The ability to follow people in this manner is a must-use feature for any aspiring young professional or entrepreneur. I've been following a few of them, and these are my top 5 must-follows!
- Richard Branson - Founder of Virgin Group The larger-than-life entrepreneur has shared 11 different updates ranging from the "Definition of Entrepreneur" to "Measuring Success." He shares some of his views and experiences, including one of my favorite quotes: "But to me, being an entrepreneur simply means being someone who wants to make a difference to other people's lives." He also happens to currently have the most number of followers!
- Guy Kawasaki - Co-Founder of Alltop Guy has been an innovator and embracer of social media as a way to engage with a wide audience. He has posted over 20 updates with topics including the effects of the Civil War on journalism and his favorite subject, authoring books. If you don't already, I suggest following him on Twitter as well!
- Craig Newmark - Founder at craigconnects I've personally been following the life and times of Craig Newmark (Founder of Craigslist) since I saw him speak at #140conf, and he is truly amazing. He engages with a wide audience, regularly responding to email or tweets. His posts support causes he believes in, such as internet freedom and the recently launched Sandy Hook Promise.
- Beth Comstock - CMO at GE Beth has a wealth of knowledge and experience from her time at NBC and GE and frequently shares her personal insights, including career advice and the pleasures of a simpler life. My favorite topic she touches on is the fact that employees shouldn't need permission to make a difference.
- Jeff Haden - Ghostwriter, speaker, Inc. columnist Jeff has been one of the more prolific posters for the Linkedin Thought Leaders. If you are working in human resources or in the middle of a job search, he is a terrific resource. Some of his articles are about leadership, while others talk about the intricacies of the interview process. The best nugget I've seen from his is: "Be at your best throughout all stages of the process. On the phone, by email, when talking to the administrative assistant who schedules the interview, while waiting in the lobby... make a great impression on everyone."
- Bonus: Our very own Dave Kerpen was recently added to the program and has shared some of his insights on customer service and using social media to land a job. If you aren't already following, I suggest you take the plunge!
What thought leaders do you follow on Linkedin? Is there a must-follow you think I left out?