Tag: linkedin profile

5 Steps To Building An Effective LinkedIn Profile

In my last article I spoke to the importance of why as a job seeker you should be actively using LinkedIn to further excel your hunt for the perfect career. This prompted the important question of, how? How do you go about creating a great professional profile that recruiters find compelling? Below are five tips that are effective in building your LinkedIn profile.

Professional Headshot

It is true what they say; a picture is worth 1000 words. LinkedIn is a website comprised of professionals. This is not a time for your latest selfie of you and your friends. You should aim to have a clean and clear headshot of yourself taken in modest clothing with minimal background distraction. While not every job will be strict with appearance and dress codes, it is best to be marketable to as many recruiters as possible. Your profile picture is the first photo a recruiter will see. Make sure you are well groomed and your headshot says, “Hello, I am your next perfect hire.”

Detailed Work Experience

Think of your LinkedIn profile as your virtual resume. If it’s not something you would be proud to bring to an interview, work at it until it is. The aspect that makes LinkedIn different than a resume is you don’t get to choose what professional might see it. There is a section to fill out your relevant work experience, and provide details of your achievements in each position. A good rule of thumb is to only list information that would aid in showing the goals you achieved and/or responsibilities, and then you can discuss additional information during your interview. Think about the relevance of your experience and try and tailor your information to match the career you are aiming for. In addition to showing your work experience, it’s equally as important to show volunteer work you may have completed. The more information you provide, the more a recruiter can learn about you and determine if you’re a good candidate for an interview.

Completing Your Profile

If you search for articles about making your LinkedIn profile stand out in the crowd, you will see this tip in each article. This speaks to the importance of fully completing your LinkedIn profile. A helpful feature that LinkedIn includes at the top of your profile is your percentage of completion. Take time to follow each prompt and purposefully fill in your content. Think about it this way: if you were a recruiter looking for a potential hire, would you choose the person who has an incomplete, vague profile, or the polished profile that is filled out in detail?

Reaching Out to Current & Prospective Connections

LinkedIn is all about building your network and connecting with professionals, and it’s important to establish new relationships and engage your connections. Send out connection requests to the individuals you have in your professional arsenal. You never know who might endorse one of your skills or write you a raving recommendation that can be displayed on your newly completed profile. Another important thought to keep in mind is, you never know where your connections may lead you. That is the beauty of LinkedIn–the site magnifies what a small world we live in. Use that to your advantage!

Your Elevator Pitch

If you are unfamiliar with an elevator pitch–it’s essentially when you have a short amount of time to tell someone who you are, what you want and why they should have a meeting with you. Underneath your profile picture on LinkedIn you will find a bio section. This is where you should put your pitch into full affect. The benefit of this section is, it increases your potential memorability to a recruiter. Make sure you are clear and concise in this statement–you only have 120 wordsas well as making it unique to your skills.

LinkedIn can easily be a job seeker’s best friend. The tips above are a nice place to begin in building a tool than can make you more attractive to the recruiters in your desired field. Implement them, and watch your professional life flourish!

Is LinkedIn Really That Important?

I first heard about LinkedIn while I was sitting in a classroom listening to my Professor discuss the importance of networking, and he briefly covered LinkedIn. Just as briefly as he touched on the subject of LinkedIn as a networking tool, I forgot about it. Knowing what I do about the tool now, I now know that was a mistake.

It is no secret that Social Media platforms are increasingly becoming the way we connect with one another. We share birthdays, vacations and thoughts with the click of a mouse on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. So if the Internet really is the place we are connecting, why are more people not using LinkedIn? According to a study shared on http://business.linkedin.com, the top recruiters for business are “60% more engaged with LinkedIn recruiting tools than the average recruiter”.1 If this is where employers are looking to hire, we should all run, not walk, to either fill out a profile, or improve upon that neglected profile that may be out of date

You’re probably thinking, “I have a profile. This does not apply to me.” While it is true that having a LinkedIn profile is half the battle, using the profile effectively will win the war. In a Forbes article I recently read, the importance of actively using your profile is discussed with the simple explanation that it’s not uncommon for a recruiter to look at your LinkedIn profile to determine whether or not to reach out to you.2

This behavior isn’t a unique scenario, as many recruiters will often review your LinkedIn profile to discover additional work-related information. Whether it is in our personal lives, or a job search, we turn to the internet as a reliable source of information and to seek out everything from restaurant reviews to career information.

Ultimately, networking tools like LinkedIn can help you connect with friends, colleagues and more. Not only can you track connections and stay in touch with professionals in your field, you can consistently form new ones and expand your network. In today’s hyper connected world, you never know who could help you land your dream job.

1. “The Ultimate List of Hiring Statistics”; Business.LinkedIn.com

2. “Recruiters Say: Avoid LinkedIn at Your Peril”; Forbes.com

Using Your LinkedIn Profile to Change Careers

The following guest post is from Joshua WaldmanJoshua Waldman, author of JOB SEARCHING WITH SOCIAL MEDIA FOR DUMMIES. Joshua is the founder of Career Enlightenment which offers professional LinkedIn profile writing services and career advice for the modern job seeker.

man jumping

LinkedIn is the place to search for a job and change careers. But, when and where do you tell people you’re looking for a job, or changing careers, using your LinkedIn profile?

Read this LinkedIn headline and tell me what you think:

Creative problem solver with a committed heart currently seeking a position with a company where I can make a difference!

Personally, I probably wouldn’t click that profile.

Often, people struggle with knowing where on their profile to tell the world they are “seeking a position.”

If you are an active career changer, I’m sure you’ve thought about it too. If you do it wrong, you will not only scare away every recruiter who reads your profile, you will probably have a hard time building your network as well.

The Reality of Using LinkedIn

Let’s face facts, recruiters tend to hunt for people who already have jobs. Saying you are “seeking” in the headline means a recruiter won’t even bother clicking on your profile from a search results page.

Second, it’s human nature to be concerned with our own problems, not others. The fact that you are seeking does nothing for me. You aren’t offering value to me. You are not giving me a reason to be excited about you. As a job seeker, you are one of millions.

Now that doesn’t mean you have to lie or hide the fact that you are indeed seeking work. It just means you have to spring it on people at the right time.

Are using your LinkedIn profile to change careers? Here’s where to share it!

Not in Your Headline!

You need to earn the right to get someone’s attention on LinkedIn. It’s not something you can take for granted.

Since the headline is pretty much the only snippet of information someone has on you when they are searching, or determining to connect back with you, your goal here is to get the click. Period.

Your headline should sell the click. That means make it clear what you can do for them. I want to see a quick job title, and then a very short statement of value. Let them know you understand their pain and their goals and that you can help them.

Here’s a headline from one of my trainers, Cara Lee, where she did just that:

Adult Educator, Speaker and Trainer Creating Experiential Learning to Maximize Learner Success

What does she do? “Adult educator,” i.e., teacher or instructor.

What problem does she solve? Boring classroom experiences.

So Where Do I Tell People I’m Seeking a New Job?

The easy answer is at the end of your LinkedIn profile summary. If someone has bothered to read until then, you’ve earned the right to ask.

After all, telling someone you’re “seeking” is a form of asking for help, isn’t it?

If you follow a profile summary format like this one, you’ll have positioned yourself as someone unique and valuable.

The call to action at the very end gives you a place to let the world know you need help, and here’s how someone can contact you.

For example, let’s say you follow my four-step formula for writing your summary. The last step, the call to action, can go something like this:

I’m looking for a medical instruments company at the cutting edge, where I can lead a sales territory and make a difference. If you are looking for someone with energy, creative problem-solving skills, and unstoppable sales ambition, please contact me at eyemawinner@gmail.com.

Tying It All Together

To summarize, don’t use your headline to say you’re looking to change careers; use the last sentence of your summary. Expert tip: when you make these updates to your profile, let LinkedIn broadcast them to your network. When you do it this way, you may find droves of people coming out and offering you their hand.

Readers, are you using your LinkedIn profile to change careers? Have you tried this approach? We’d love to hear how it has worked for you. Feel free to comment below.

Originally published as Using Your LinkedIn Profile to Change Careers.

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