Finding Lost Colleagues, Easily

July 15 – This week I finally located someone I’ve been trying to find for years. She worked with me for a few months at my first job on Wall Street, and I needed to reconnect for both personal and business reasons. But the company came and went pretty quickly, making that difficult.

I found her using, a career networking site. I also tracked down a college friend from choir, a former teacher and his son (see above story), and about ten other former coworkers.

After you register there and enter the companies you’ve worked for, it gives you a list of others who worked at that company. Or, in the case of my friend, you can just type in their name and see if they come up. This is handy when they’ve decided not to list a company on their resume (which was the case with her).

Then you send a private message to the ones you know, and it’s up to them to respond. When they do (and I say when, because that's what the site is all about), your list of contacts grows and grows.

You can also use the site to formally register professional references. This is valuable, because you can accumulate and store as many references as you like, and every time someone needs them, you can refer them to LinkedIn instead of asking your references to make themselves available for multiple calls. And you can decide what level of public or private access you set for your online profile.

Thanks go out to my friend Joe for letting me know about this. If you check it out, look me up there and send me a message through the site. And don’t be surprised if you find a few long-lost friends or colleagues.

– p.k.