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A guide for people who don’t get LinkedIn

By Blog

A few months ago, an entrepreneur confided to me that he didn’t “get” LinkedIn. Yes, he had a profile (basically a copy of his résumé) and the beginnings of a network. But he didn’t know what he was supposed to do with it, or how LinkedIn could help him. I was surprised, because he has the largest Rolodex I’ve ever seen — more than 4,000 contacts.

It turned out that he wasn’t the only one. I asked around and discovered that many of my real-world friends and colleagues either didn’t have a profile, or just filled in the basics and left it dead in the water. Like the entrepreneur, they had hundreds or even thousands of career contacts in the real world, but hadn’t made the jump to online career networking. “What’s the point?” they asked. “How can it benefit me?”

LinkedIn User GuideIf you’re nodding your head as you read this, then you need to get LinkedIn In 30 Minutes, by author Melanie Pinola. It’s a LinkedIn user guide that targets people who are new to the career networking service, as well as people who have rudimentary profiles in need of a serious makeover. It not only explains why LinkedIn is so important, it also shows how to use it, using examples, screenshots, and step-by-step explanations delivered in plain English. LinkedIn In 30 Minutes is available for purchase in a half-dozen formats, including paperback, a Kindle edition, the iPad version, and even a PDF. The official product website also contains some basic resources for people new to LinkedIn (“What is LinkedIn?“) and a growing library of bonus resources about LinkedIn.

The author, Melanie Pinola, knows her stuff. Not only has she written about LinkedIn for Lifehacker, she has also experienced LinkedIn as many people do — she started with a basic profile, but didn’t really appreciate the value of the career network at first. She describes her early experience in Chapter 4:

I have a confession to make. Once upon a time, I was a lackluster LinkedIn member. My profile was basically a duplicate of my résumé. I rarely interacted with other members. I didn’t join any groups.

In other words, I was like many people who are “on” LinkedIn but not seriously using it because the site is seen as more of a job-searching tool.

After learning about all the ways LinkedIn can help professionals in all stages of their careers, I wish I had been using LinkedIn more effectively from the very beginning.

For one thing, just having an updated profile and being active on the network makes you a more attractive employee or career professional. It’s like wearing a badge that says “Yes, I care about my career and what I do (and I’m poachable!).”

Also, I think we’ve all realized by now that no job lasts forever. It’s better to be ahead of the curve by being active on LinkedIn and cultivating relationships before you need it to find a job.

There’s more. LinkedIn is also a gold mine of information about people, companies, and industries. It’s growing increasingly more valuable as a career enhancer, with more tools and features being regularly added to the network.

Melanie’s insights deliver huge value to anyone getting started with LinkedIn. For a small investment of time and money (it costs less than a pizza!), LinkedIn In 30 Minutes will help you create a rock-solid online career presence. Check out the contents of the guide here, and then buy it here. You won’t regret it.

Chinese Fish Dish: Soy-braised salmon from the next “In 30 Minutes” guide

By Blog, Video

salmon chinese fish dish

Get ready to try a superb Chinese fish dish — soy-braised salmon! It’s a recipe from an upcoming In 30 Minutes title on Chinese cooking by author Shiao-jang Kung (Update: The ebook Easy Chinese Recipes In 30 Minutes was just released). The recipes in the book are easy to cook (all take less than 30 minutes from start to finish), and use simple, healthy ingredients that you can buy at any American supermarket. The ebook also contains embedded videos.

If this title interests you, please “Like” this page and share it with your friends. And be sure to visit the product page for Easy Chinese Recipes In 30 Minutes.

The recipe is printed below. If you try to make the soy-braised salmon dish, please let us know in the comments how it went!

Soy-braised salmon (蔥燒鮭魚)


  • Cooking oil: 2 tablespoons
  • Onions: One large onion or two small ones — about 1 to 1.5 cups, sliced into rough strands about the width of a pencil. The onion will give the dish some sweetness.
  • Scallions: Two scallions, with the ends trimmed and sliced diagonally to make longer strands.
  • Ginger: 2 inch long stub. Cut off the skin and slice into rough strands about the thickness of cooked spaghetti.
  • Salmon filets – 1 pound, cut into 3-inch wide strips (4 or 5). If it has skin, that’s OK — it can be removed after cooking.
  • Rice wine (or substitute white wine or beer): 1/4 cup
  • White sugar or brown sugar: 1/8 teaspoon. You can also substitute Japanese mirin (about 1 tablespoon).
  • Soy sauce: 6 tablespoons


Prepare the ingredients. This should take 5-10 minutes.

Turn on heat below wok to high. Add the cooking oil. After one minute, add ginger, onion, and scallions, and stir them around to coat with oil. Stir regularly over next five minutes. When the mixture is throwing off fragrance, lay the strips of fish on top. Mix wine or beer with the sugar, then add the liquid to the wok. Pour the soy in equal amounts over the fish. Cover the wok and turn down heat to medium-high.

Cook covered for 5 minutes. Turn down the heat to medium, and open cover. The sauce should be a bit thicker and bubbling. The top of the fish may look a little pale. Using a spatula, lift one of the pieces to check the bottom of the fish. If it’s light brown on the bottom, the soy flavor is getting into the fish and you can flip all of the pieces so the pale side is facing down. If not, cover the fish for two more minutes and then flip the pieces.

After the pieces have been flipped, cover the wok and cook for two more minutes. Turn down the heat to medium-low, and take off the cover. Check to see if the fish is done by taking a fork and opening the end of one of the fatter pieces. If it’s flaky and not red inside, you’re done — turn off the heat and serve!

You can add a little sesame oil (drizzle about 1/2 teaspoon) over the fish to add a little more flavor, but it tastes pretty good by itself over rice!