updated 6/22/2011 9:16:43 AM ET 2011-06-22T13:16:43

MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif., June 22, 2011 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- LinkedIn, the world's largest professional network with more than 100 million members worldwide, today released data on the differences between men and women when it comes to networking professionally online.

To declare a winner in this battle of the sexes argument, LinkedIn developed an online professional networking "savviness" ranking. Globally and in the U.S. men are savvier online professional networkers than women. LinkedIn defines online professional networking savviness as a ratio of two things: the ratio of connections that men have to connections that women have and the ratio of male members on LinkedIn to female members.

"Having the right connections can make a difference when it comes to sealing a deal or landing a new client," said Nicole Williams, LinkedIn's Connection Director and best-selling author of the book, "Girl on Top." "Women can sometimes shy away from networking because they associate it with schmoozing or doling out business cards, when in reality, it's about building relationships before you actually need them. Networking in person can be intimidating, so women should look at a site like LinkedIn as a place they can go to cultivate their networking skills."

That's not to say women aren't already teaching men a professional networking lesson or two. "I was actually the one who introduced my husband to LinkedIn," said Sharr Stark, an independent consultant and LinkedIn member based in Portland, Ore. "We sat down and I showed him how to request recommendations on LinkedIn so he could in turn leverage them as testimonials on his website. The recommendations on his profile are great because they help him market his services to other potential customers."

LinkedIn's data got even more interesting when it was sliced by industry. What you would think would be a female savvy industry (the cosmetics industry for example) is actually a male savvy industry. This means despite the fact that there are more female professionals in the cosmetics industry, men in the cosmetics industry tend to be savvier online professional networkers than the women in that industry. In the tobacco and ranching industries, it was the female professionals that were savvier networkers than men (even taking into account the fact that the male to female ratio is higher in those industries). LinkedIn's data analytics team believes this could be because the minority sex has to network harder than the dominant sex to break into those industries.

Top U.S. industries where women are savvier online professional networkers than men

  1. Alternative dispute resolution
  2. Tobacco
  3. Alternative medicine
  4. Ranching
  5. International trade and development

Top U.S. industries where men are savvier online professional networkers than women

  1. Medical practice
  2. Hospital & health care
  3. Cosmetics
  4. Law enforcement
  5. Capital markets

In the U.S., men and women were equally as savvy in the following industries: "dairy," "individual & family services," "market research," "media production" and "paper & forest products."

Find out which U.S. companies have female employees who are more savvy at online professional networking then the male employees, download our infographic and get more details on LinkedIn's battle of the sexes on the LinkedIn Blog: http://lnkd.in/men-vs-women

About LinkedIn

Founded in 2003, LinkedIn connects the world's professionals to make them more productive and successful. With more than 100 million members worldwide, including executives from every Fortune 500 company, LinkedIn is the world's largest professional network on the Internet.  The company has a diversified business model with revenues coming from member subscriptions, marketing solutions and hiring solutions. Headquartered in Silicon Valley, LinkedIn also has offices across North America, as well as throughout Europe and Asia and in India and Australia.

The LinkedIn logo is available at http://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/prs/?pkgid=9679

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