10 LinkedIn Mistakes and How to Avoid Them

GU_CareerTips_4Q14_MistakesLinkedIn is a great tool to assist with your job search. There is a right and a wrong way to use it, though. Find out which of these mistakes you may be making – and how to avoid them.

1. No Profile Picture

A gray silhouette is a red flag to LinkedIn users. A picture to go along with your profile makes you more relatable; more human. Recruiters want to put a face with a name, so you should include a professional headshot of yourself to accompany your skills and experience.

2. Including “Seeking Opportunities” in the Headline

Although this is a nice way of saying you haven’t quite yet landed the position you’re looking for, it can make you look desperate. Instead, include your area of expertise or what your general job title would be in your headline. “Veterinary Technology Professional” or “Business Marketing Expert,” for example. These keywords will help you come up in search results if a hiring manager is looking for someone like you.

3. Not Completing the Summary Section Fully

The Summary section of your profile is a chance for you to showcase your value to potential employers and sell yourself as an employee. Be sure to fill it out completely, including uploading files or linking to examples of your work, such as a PowerPoint presentation or blog article.

4. Not Including Contact Information

Your contact information should be easy to find on your profile. People won’t spend extra time looking for it if it’s not available, so you could be passed over for job opportunities.

5. Confusing Work History

If your work history is confusing or doesn’t match your resume, it will turn recruiters off. Make sure you clearly lay out everywhere you’ve worked, for how long, and what your job title, duties and any accomplishments were.

6. Grammar and Spelling Mistakes

If your profile is littered with grammar and spelling mistakes, it simply looks bad. It gives off the impression you’re sloppy and that you don’t pay attention to detail – qualities a hiring manager does not want in an employee.

7. Not Including All 50 Skills

People are able to search skills on LinkedIn, and the more skills you have listed on your profile, the more likely you are to come up in search results. Take advantage of this feature by listing the maximum 50 skills.

8. Not Joining All 50 Groups

Being a member of a group can also help you get pulled in search results. Join 50 industry-related groups to maximize this opportunity, and don’t forget to engage!

9. Not Getting into the Discussion

Participating in group discussions or commenting on posts is not only a great way to show your expertise, but it can put you in front of key influencers who have the power to get you hired.

10. Not Saying Thank You

Always thank a new connection. It starts a conversation and shows the person you’re not just blindly adding every LinkedIn user you can. Point out that you have the same interests, a common connection or similar work experience to make the message more personal.

To learn more about Globe University and career support services visit www.globeuniversity.edu/about-us/career-services.