LinkedIn may sometimes feel like the middle child of social media — living in the shadow of the older, more established Facebook and not as dazzling or exciting as Instagram. However if you are building your professional brand or are doing a business to business promotion, then it’s the platform for you.
Why LinkedIn? LinkedIn is where everyone goes to check you out. After you meet someone at a networking event or you’re recommended to fill a position, most business people will look at your LinkedIn profile.
Look at your profile and compare it against this checklist to make sure that you have a profile that will further your career..
1) How old is your picture? Does it reflect the way you actually look? If you met someone face-to-face, would be able to recognize you by your photo. Also, no selfies. Spend a little extra money and have a professional picture taken or have a friend take the picture. If you take your own photo, pay special attention to lighting and photo composition. Make sure the remains of your lunch are not in the background.
2) What does your headline say about you? Many people simply put their current job title under their profile picture. However does that title really say anything about you? Simply putting that you are the owner of a store may not convey the message that you specialize in corporate gifts.
3) Is your profile complete? Does your profile have a complete list of your employment, education, community activities, etc.? If not, make sure you go through and complete any missing information. You never know if a piece of information may be the one that leads you to your next job or partnership.
4) Check you grammar, spelling and overall language use. It’s not only what you say, but also how you say it.
5) Is there any outdated information? If an institution has changed it’s name, make sure to identify it by its current name. Also check dates, is a prior position marked as current? All of these details make a difference.
6) Ask a friend or mentor to review your profile with a critical eye. Evaluate their suggestions and see if you should incorporate them.
LinkedIn can be a great tool to enhance your career if you take the time to update and maintain it. If you need help with your profile, contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.