We’re excited to introduce our April series on a subject that we get asked about a lot — Linkedin. As always, if you have specific questions, tweet us @slingshotconns or SnapChat us at SlingShotConns.
Renee and the SlingShot Team
LinkedIn can be overwhelming. It’s this huge abyss of options and trap doors. What is an endorsement? Do I need it? Do I just copy and paste my resume? Do I really need a photo? If you’re overwhelmed, just know there are many in the same boat, which is why I teach workshops on how to create and engage with the LinkedIn platform.
Are you wondering if you really need a LinkedIn account?
My short answer is
With over 441 million users on LinkedIn, we would be remiss if we didn’t use LinkedIn as a platform to connect with candidates, clients and organizations.
Our objective with this series is to make LinkedIn less of an abyss and more of a helpful tool in your job search or a great vehicle to connect professionally with your peers.
Today, we tackle the question: “Is a photo really necessary on LinkedIn?”
We live in a virtual world, where we’re often making our first impressions via social media. Let me put it to you this way, who would you rather connect with for their next career opportunity:
or this person:
Here are a few things to think about when choosing the best profile picture for your LinkedIn account:
Is the photo current?
I was speaking with a job seeker once who said she didn’t want to use a current picture because it would show hiring managers how old she was. Instead she opted to use a photo from her high school yearbook, 22 years ago. Let me say a couple of things about that:
What underlying message are you sending when, I meet you and you look nothing like the photo from 22 years ago? You could be John Stamos, where you haven’t changed a single bit in 22 years, but the chances are that is not the case. As a recruiter, I experienced meeting with someone who had a photo that didn’t represent how they looked. When it happened, I instantly thought, what else could this person be misrepresenting?
Is the photo professionally appropriate?
Based on candidates that have applied for positions or messaged me on LinkedIn, this is what doesn’t work:
- A picture of someone with inappropriate language like 420 on their shirt, in clouds of smoke.
- A picture of someone doing a keg stand – red solo cup in hand (I am not kidding, this really happened).
- Pictures that might be perceived as too personal- your wedding photo, a photo with you in the hospital posing with your newborn baby. Don’t get me wrong, these are great pictures, and they’re awesome on Facebook or Instagram, but not your LinkedIn account.
- Use this as your rule of thumb: Would you break this photo out in an interview? If the answer is no, then it shouldn’t be your profile picture.
This is what works best: A simple headshot of you, dressed as yourself, being yourself.
Next week, we tackle: What information should my profile really provide?
What are your LinkedIn questions? Email us at email@example.com or tweet, snap or Instagram us @slingshotconns or you can connect with us on LinkedIn https://www.linkedin.com/company/slingshot-connections or on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/SlingShotconnectionS/