LinkedIn is testing a new feature that will help users find potential mentors and mentees, Fast Company reports.
The free service is only available to some users right now, but it will be available to all LinkedIn users by the end of the summer, a LinkedIn representative told Fast Company.
Here’s how it will work:
• There will be a place on your profile called “your dashboard,” where you can access the “career advice hub.”
• You sign up to be a mentor or a mentee.
• You give some detail about who you’d like to connect with, for example in terms of industry or school, and what kind of advice you’d like to give or receive.
• LinkedIn’s matching algorithm comes up with recommended matches. You select one of your matches and the person gets a message saying you’d like to connect. If both people agree, they can start chatting — either on or off LinkedIn.
Hari Srinivasan, the director of product management at LinkedIn, told Fast Company that LinkedIn is developing content to help users give and receive solid career advice.
Srinivasan also mentioned that this service is geared toward “quick question” requests, as opposed to ongoing relationships.
This service could potentially make it easier to ask for career advice, since there will presumably be people in your industry who have agreed to be mentors. In other words, there’s a smaller chance you’ll get rejected because the person doesn’t have time to talk to you.
That said, certain rules around asking for career advice still apply. You’ll probably want to make your request as specific as possible, and to let the person know if you use their tips successfully.