Wednesday, January 28, 2015

10 LinkedIn mistakes that will cost you a job

By J. Barbush

Remember when networking was something you did with your dad or mom and their circle? Your parents would mention to their friends, "Did you know my daughter is interested in advertising?"

Nowadays you don't need a parental circle, or even your parents, to connect to people who can help with your career.

You do need a plan. Now that you can contact people so easily on LinkedIn, how will you use that access?

LinkedIn adds texture to a boring résumé. It brings your interests, charities, and portfolio to life in one place.

But it's also easy to overindulge—like a college freshman at his or her first kegger—and embarrass yourself. Making a silly mistake on Facebook is one thing. Embarrassing yourself on LinkedIn could cost you a job or career.

Here are some common mistakes to avoid on LinkedIn:

Mistake No. 1: You don't consider yourself a product.
Deconstruct what you like about your favorite brands. Are they funny, clever, consistent? Do they always deliver on their identities? Do they innovate? Do they have a competitive advantage? Keeping those considerations in mind will help you build a simple, tailored, smart profile.


Once you determine your personal product voice, incorporate it into your profile. Lead with a concise, well-written summary that details your capabilities and what you can contribute.

Mistake No. 3: You're too social.
Stop thinking of LinkedIn as a social network. It's a professional network. There's a big difference in how you approach a social dinner versus a business dinner, right?

Use this analogy. Rather than focus on connecting with buddies, zero in on connecting with people you just met at a conference. You may not be as "social" with them as with your college buddies, but you do have a common business interest that will serve you much better on this platform.

Your headshot should also be professional. A suggestive shot or one that shows you partying won't go over well in human resources. 

See all 10 mistakes and the complete article

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