If you are not putting your best self forward on LinkedIn, you are doing yourself a huge disservice. It’s time to change your LinkedIn habits before the New Year.
Think about it. Do you know how many people Google your name and use your LinkedIn profile to judge your professional value?
Potential employers, clients, mentors, and partners are all viewing your profile. Your profile determines if others want to build a relationship with you. If your profile doesn’t mesmerize your target audience within six seconds, you can forget about taking advantage of the opportunity that had your name on it.
Fortunately, you can upgrade your profile within 60 minutes and create a compelling story that boosts your professional brand. Don’t start the new year with a bland profile. Here are four ways to upgrade your LinkedIn profile before the New Year:
1. Highlight Your Accomplishments
Don’t sell yourself short. Most people complete the experience section with only their job title and a list of responsibilities. How does this differentiate you from other individuals with the same title? This is your chance to share accomplishments that highlight the skills and personality traits that are most important to you.
For example, if you successfully led a team through a systems integration project, share how the team grew as a result of your leadership. Did you have to train the team, create an action plan, and provide frequent updates? Highlight the accomplishments that mean the most to you. Use your past experiences to demonstrate how you can help other organizations or individuals with their most daunting challenges.
2. Guarantee Credibility
Credibility builds public confidence in the work that you deliver. Validate your LinkedIn profile by receiving recommendations from credible sources in your profession. If you are too afraid to ask for a recommendation, start giving recommendations to others. Nine times out of ten, the person will return the favor and give you a recommendation.
You can also enhance your credibility by sharing relevant articles and creating valuable content that shows your knowledge in a specific area. You want people to see you as a subject matter expert and be the first person others think about when they need help in a certain area.
3. Network to Build Your LinkedIn Net Worth
Your visibility is proportional to the number of connections you have. The magic number for connections on LinkedIn is 500. If you have less than 500 connections, the entire world knows because this number is visible to all LinkedIn guests and users. If you have 510 or 5000 connections, you are the only person who will know because your profile will still display 500+.
Continue to think of ways that you could build your networks on and off LinkedIn. Set weekly networking goals to keep you on track. Be strategic! Perform a gap analysis and identity specific individuals that you would like to have in your network. These actions will take you from where you are to where you want to be in your professional life.
4. Audit Your LinkedIn Profile
We may have professionals audit our financial statements, but have you ever thought about auditing your professional brand? If the entire world has access to your LinkedIn profile, you want to make sure you are sending the right message. An independent review of your LinkedIn profile can take your profile from invisible to irresistible or expose you to blind spots that you never considered.
Hire someone to review your LinkedIn profile who can provide an assessment of your strengths and help you grow to the next level. It may be the things that you don’t know that can be standing in between you and your next opportunity.