LinkedIn Checklist: 10 Tweaks for Control Freaks (Part 2)

the traffic lights on white backgroundA week ago, I posted Part 1 of my ten tips for better controlling your LinkedIn profile.

Here’s Part 2:

Control Tweak #6:  Customize your public profile (Settings > Profile > Edit your public profile)

LinkedIn lets you “control how you appear when people search for you on Google, Yahoo!, Bing, etc.”

Thank you, LinkedIn.

One of the complexities of having a public profile on LinkedIn is that part of our credit worthiness comes from our career history. It stands to reason that some random individual with illegal intentions could use your LinkedIn profile — and other smatterings of data about you across the Internet — to create a profile in your name, and yes, even apply for and decimate your credit worthiness.

For this reason, I don’t allow LinkedIn to show my past positions publicly, and indeed, you may have other edits once you see the deep levels of customization LinkedIn offers.

Remember that information you’ve listed on your profile will still be fully visible to your connections, which gives good reason to know the people to whom  you are connected. Although even LinkedIn seems to be encouraging that we cast a much broader net these days.

While you’re on the page in question, scroll down and be sure you’ve customized your public profile.

Related post: How to Customize Your LinkedIn URL

Control Tweak #7: Edit your name, location and industry (Settings > Profile > Helpful Links)

I’d ignored this for several years, when in 2009 I took a training by Jason Alba ( author of “I’m on LinkedIn, Now What?”) and he recommended that I change my profile headline from “Principal” to “Executive Resume Writer.”

The effectiveness of my profile changed within moments as Google inexplicably re-indexed my appearance in search, not to mention the value of searches inside the LinkedIn ecosystem.

After all, who types in “Principal” when searching for an executive resume writer?

:facepalm:

The same can be true for one’s industry. My profile’s performance increased dramatically when I changed from “writing and editing” to “professional training and coaching,” which more appropriately defines my work.

As an executive résumé writer, I want people to be able to reach me. I use my LinkedIn profile often, and I’m accessible. If I returned to retained executive search, however, I’d write my summary in third person, formal tone of voice, and lock down my accessibility. I might even stop posting status updates.

Decide the best approach for you, and set up your own profile to match your position and purpose on LinkedIn. Continue reading

LinkedIn Checklist: 10 Tweaks for Control Freaks (Part 1)

Writing Control Your LinkedIn Presencean executive résumé is baffling for many of the folks I speak to every day.

Too often the résumé becomes a bloated version of one written straight out of college, and by mid-career there’s so much information that it’s tough to be objective about what stays and what goes.

Then comes LinkedIn, posing as a résumé, but not really being a résumé because of its public nature, norms, and new boundary-pushing ways.

To be absent from LinkedIn is to marginalize opportunity. To be on LinkedIn without understanding it, however, is to potentially invite career gaffes and public blunders in a new age.

The result of all this confusion is a shell of a LinkedIn profile that looks like its owner doesn’t care.

Happily, LinkedIn offers a variety of settings and controls so we can sleep at night, and perhaps instill more confidence to meaningfully build out those profiles so LinkedIn can actually start working for us.

Here are five I’ve prepared for you to tackle this weekend. I’ll post the next five in seven short days.  Continue reading

What the BLEEP are LinkedIn Endorsements?

What are LinkedIn EndorsementsAnd more importantly, does LinkedIn risk losing credibility in the long term by unwittingly opening its users up to legal problems in their careers?

A close friend recently asked, “What are LinkedIn endorsements, and do you condone them?”

As management within a public retail giant, he is not authorized to give references or recommendations about employees in his everyday life.

Indeed, reference checks are funneled along to HR, which offers scant details limited to “yes that was their title” and “yes, those were the dates.”

So his wise instinct is not participate in LinkedIn endorsements.

“What are LinkedIn endorsements, and do you condone them?”  Continue reading

I Love Ya LinkedIn, But Something’s Amiss

Either recruiters have gotten lazy, or there’s a new LinkedIn function in use that doesn’t quite hit the mark.

Thursday, I received an email from a recruiter that in ordinary circumstances would be accompanied by at least a slightly customized note.

Instead, I was left to guess why I was sent an unsolicited job description calling for a healthcare industry tech writer.

Um. Hmm.

First, I had to deduce what it was.

Second, I wasn’t the right target.

I suspect that the content and skills I have on my profile somehow ranked in a set of parameters that brought me to the recruiter’s attention.

Good.

While I’m not looking to abandon my executive résumé writing practice, it’s nice being considered. Continue reading

Writing for LinkedIn? Get to the Point!

How to write LinkedIn profileLast week, I read the opening line to an executive’s LinkedIn profile.

She showed up among the list of people I may know.

I didn’t know her, but it appears she’s at the top of her game, so sure, I’d like to.

Unfortunately, she’s not writing concisely: a quest each of us is always on, presumably.

Her LinkedIn profile began: “In my current position as the head of XYZ at ABC company….”

Hmm.

Why current?  Isn’t that assumed?

Let’s strike and flip a few words, shall we?

In my current position as the head of XYZ at ABC company….”

Here’s her alternative:

“As head of ABC’s XYZ practice, I….”

Instead of slogging through twelve words, she nails it with seven. Bonus points for driving straight to the point.

A beautiful thing.

Of course, some will argue that the sentence structure is all too passive, but I believe there’s a time and place to back into an idea. This is one of them. We know who she is right away.

I say this as loudly to myself as to anyone. As a writer, I’m on a constant quest for economy of words.

This is one way to find that efficient balance.

Try it.

Until next time!

Jared Redick

Visit: The Resume Studio.com
Follow: @TheResumeStudio
Connect: LinkedIn.com/in/jaredredick
Call: 415-397-6640

4 Reasons You Need a Career-Only Email Address

These four realities make a great case for creating a career development only email address 

Reality #1:  

You can’t assume that you’ll always be in control of your work email address. 

Harvard attorney Shauna Bryce of BryceLegal.com and HowToGetALegalJob.com says it’s natural to feel like we’ll always be in control of our work email addresses until we relinquish them.

But it’s not always true. Continue reading

Missed the Memo? Don’t Put Negative Stuff in Writing

Recently, a friend — let’s call her Sue — wrote a pretty funny Facebook rant. Don't Share Negative News

Witty marketing is her gig, after all, and she’s smart-as-a-whip, so we all enjoy reading her creative take on life.

Unfortunately, the post involved blasting a sponsor, and she then proceeded to copy and paste the would-be sponsor’s rejection letter on her Facebook wall.

Yes, on her wall.

I inboxed her right away and suggested that she remove it ASAP.

While perhaps humorous behind closed doors — yes, there’s probably a time and a place to blow off steam — social media has become a bull pen of possible career-blunting blunders. For some, “trying not to step in it” has become a full-time affair.

If you’re prone to what my mother used to call, “popping off at the mouth,” consider the possible implications of my friend’s post: Continue reading