LinkedIn is a social networking website with a focus on careers and the workplace.
Like with any social networking site, you need to be choosy about what information you put into public view, but this is especially important for LinkedIn. Past, present, and future employers may be looking through your information, and it can be a great way to establish a professional profile online focusing on you and your accomplishments.
Read on for tips for building a great LinkedIn profile.
Make a profile
First of all, if you don’t have a LinkedIn account, create one right now. More and more companies are registering on the website, increasing the chances of a potential employer finding you. It also increases the chances of you finding a company or expertise that you’re interested in. Even if you already have a well-paying job, it’s always great to establish a virtual resume for yourself – and represent your company well.
List your work
Make sure in your experience section that you list all work experience relevant to what kind of work you want to in the future. Be detailed about all the different tasks you needed to accomplish during a typical workday, and use action words to describe your work, like you would for any resume. Be sure that your job title is clear and all the technical information (when you started, when you ended, where the company is located, etc.) is all accurate.
Picky profile pic
Choose a profile picture that you would be comfortable with employers looking at (because, let’s face it, they might very well see that image before they see you in person). It doesn’t need to be a professional headshot, but if you could make arrangements for that, all the better. Or pick a photo from on the job or from your travels.
Don’t make connections with people you don’t know, but try to make as many connections as you possibly can among friends and colleagues. Don’t only connect with people in your company or most direct networks. It will look much more impressive and reputable if you’re able to connect with a diverse group of people who work in a variety of positions.
Add all networks of higher education you’ve received over the years, and be sure you’re clear about your focus of study while at the educational institution. Definitely list any important honors or awards you received while studying there. It’s also a good idea to list some of your activities you were involved in while at the university. It’ll show people that you’re well rounded and have other interests besides what you were majoring in or specializing in.
Get a recommendation
It definitely never hurts if you can get someone to publicly recommend you as an employee in your field, or if you can get someone to publicly endorse your level of expertise in a variety of different skills. Consider asking past or present employers or professors to provide this type of reference for you.
Got any other tips for building a great LinkedIn profile? Leave them in the comments below.