THE ELITE CAREER BLOG

Why do I need a LinkedIn profile?

Using Linkedin for your career development

LinkedIn can be a very valuable part of your career development, however it’s often underestimated as just another social media platform or ‘thing to do’. We’re here to help you see why LinkedIn is an important tool in your career-planning toolkit.

 

Think about well known brands like Coca-Cola, Nike, or Mercedes. They have all made it easy for customers to say ‘yes’ to their products by cultivating strong, easily recognisable brands and being easy to find when those same customers need a great pair of runners or a cold caffeine boost. LinkedIn is where you do this same process – for your own brand.

Isn’t LinkedIn just ‘Facebook for work?’

LinkedIn is an online social media platform – and yes, it has a lot in common with Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.  You make connections, write posts, share articles and engage with other peoples content. You can send direct messages and scroll the LinkedIn version of Facebooks news feed to see what your colleagues and connections are up to.

 

The key difference? LinkedIn is where you do your PROFESSIONAL networking. It’s not just another place to share funny memes, post a treadmill for a quick sale or re-tell highly personal anecdotes.

 

LinkedIn will support you in expanding your professional network. It’s also a place to research companies and their activities, connect with recruiters and find job opportunities. 

Do I need to be on LinkedIn?

In short, no. You don’t NEED to be anywhere. However, LinkedIn is a fantastic opportunity to give potential employers greater insight to who you are and what you bring to the table – BEYOND what is on your resume. It allows you to present yourself in a more personal and engaging manner, as well as demonstrate some of your interpersonal skills when joining in conversations.  

 

I would also urge you to consider the power of the internet, and what people can find out about you with a quick Google search.  When potential employers search for you online your LinkedIn will likely be one of the top results – IF you have a profile. By creating an on-brand LinkedIn profile, you can direct people to what you WANT them to see, and control your narrative.

 

Finally, LinkedIn is a great platform to carve out a name for yourself, or position yourself as a ‘thought leader’ in your industry. It is the perfect place to gain greater visibility, kick off important conversations and demonstrate your credibility within your industry on a larger scale.

How can I use LinkedIn to show more of my personality?

Oh, let me count the ways!

  1. At Elite, we still hear regularly from people wanting to know about including headshots on their resumes. We always direct these people to take those straight to their LinkedIn profile. While we’re on the topic, your headshot should be simple, high-resolution and professional. It should never – ever – be a cropped photo from a night out with friends, a selfie, or a photo of you doing something you wouldn’t do in the presence of a senior manager.
  2. When writing the ‘about me’ section of the profile or leaving comments on posts from your network, you can use a less formal, more conversational tone than on a formal resume document.
  3. Engaging in conversations on popular posts, or joining discussions in groups will allow you to showcase your knowledge, as well as your interpersonal skills and ability to create rapport.
  4. Finally (my favourite part) the recommendation section. When you view a persons profile, you can scroll down and see if they have received or if they have given any written recommendations. Think of this section like the ‘written reference’ of days gone by. Years ago, people would receive a written reference from a past employer and provide copies to future employers as part of a job application. It’s all online now, my friend.

Who should have a LinkedIn profile?

Many people would say “it’s important for everyone!’. But that simply isn’t true. In a nutshell, if you are a professional who would like to grow and then leverage your professional network to achieve your career ambitions…you should create a LinkedIn profile.

 

If you’re in a highly creative profession, LinkedIn may feel stifling to you. Consider a portfolio site where you can take your projects and work into far greater detail, and have creative control of the presentation. 

 

And if you don’t have time to check in on a regular basis, check your message inbox, make connections and participate in conversation, it’s probably not worth investing a significant amount of time and energy into your LinkedIn profile.

Do I need to be on LinkedIn?

In short, no. You don’t NEED to be anywhere. However, LinkedIn is a fantastic opportunity to give potential employers greater insight to who you are and what you bring to the table – BEYOND what is on your resume. It allows you to present yourself in a more personal and engaging manner, as well as demonstrate some of your interpersonal skills when joining in conversations.  

 

I would also urge you to consider the power of the internet, and what people can find out about you with a quick Google search.  When potential employers search for you online your LinkedIn will likely be one of the top results – IF you have a profile. By creating an on-brand LinkedIn profile, you can direct people to what you WANT them to see, and control your narrative.

 

Finally, LinkedIn is a great platform to carve out a name for yourself, or position yourself as a ‘thought leader’ in your industry. It is the perfect place to gain greater visibility, kick off important conversations and demonstrate your credibility within your industry on a larger scale.

What to avoid when creating your LinkedIn profile

Here at The Elite Collective, the majority of our clients are ambitious professionals in government or contracting roles.  LinkedIn can be – well, a bit of a nightmare when it comes to certain government roles.

 

Long story short:
1. Don’t disclose your security clearance on an unsecured, public platform where anyone can see it.

2. Put some thought into if you SHOULD be detailing out every different role you have held, for how long, and what you did there.

 

Paint with broad brush strokes, my friend.

How can Elite support you with your LinkedIn profile?

If LinkedIn is a viable part of your career strategy moving forward and you’d like to invest in some professional assistance to truly take your online presence to the next level, let’s talk. We also have a free, customisable LinkedIn optimisation workbook, which you can download here.  

 

And if you’re in Canberra and you’d like to up your personal branding game, we can connect you with our in-house, professional photographer to capture headshots that you’ll be proud to share with the world.  

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