LinkedIn can be considered one of the most daunting social media platforms to be a member of. When I first became part of the LinkedIn community, I was definitely intimidated by the strength and professional style of my peers’ work experience, academic success, and involvement. However, through plenty of research and consultation with others, I have been able to craft a profile that represents me well! I want to share with you all five areas of your profile that are necessary to develop if you want to set yourself apart from your peers!
1. Profile Picture
One of the first things someone sees when looking at your LinkedIn profile is the photo associated with your account! A professional headshot is standard for most individuals, as it shows you wearing business clothing. Make sure you use photos with good lighting, background, and contrast. Don’t have a LinkedIn photo?? The Office of Career Services will be in PH C100 from 10am-12pm every day this week to take your photo!
A LinkedIn headline is a few words found below your name and profile photo that expresses where you are at currently in your professional career. Many students simply fill this section with their major and university; however, this is an area for you to be creative and draw in employers, peers, and other individuals you want to add to your network. Some examples are, “Aspiring Public Health Advocate” and “Future Physical Therapist”.
The summary of your LinkedIn profile is considered the biography of your account. This area is a place where you can draft and present your elevator pitch, which includes your academic path, key strengths, career paths, and motivations. A strong summary is one that will connect viewers of your profile with your goals and aspirations in a concise manner.
This section of your profile should include the university you are attending, current year as a student, and any listed major and minor(s). In this section, you can expand on certain courses you are enrolled in, and attach files of projects you have completed to show your network how you are developing as a young professional. You can also connect with alumni or staff and faculty if you have an accurate education section.
Individuals who search for and reach your account want to see what kind of work you have completed that is relevant to your career path, whether it is a part-time job, internship, or other position. It is important in this section to not only emphasize the employers you have experience with, but to expand on the projects, tasks, and professional skills you acquired during your employment. This portion of your profile should reflect what is listed on your resume to maintain consistency.
LinkedIn is a platform that seems overwhelming at first; however with time and practice, you will gain confidence on how to create a strong and competitive profile! Need some help updating your profile? Check out the group coaching session with Ms. Kim Ecenbarger on Wednesday, 12/6 to get some awesome tips on how to enhance your existing profile over winter break! All information can be found on the Office of Career Services website under the “Events” tab!
Still figuring out how this whole blogging thing works!