Make your LinkedIn profile SHINE

I’ve helped some friends and former colleagues improve on their LinkedIn profiles over the years.

Previously, my LinkedIn profile was a collection of resume like bullet points. Some keywords, some buzzwords, but generally speaking, it was more or less like my resume.


My suggestions, in no particular order:

(screen shots and information is as of May 2021, these will likely change as LinkedIn continues to make changes to the platform)

  1. We’re going to be making a lot of changes on our profile, let’s not draw attention to it right now and turn off ‘Profile Visibility’. To do this, click on where your profile photo is (or should be, more on that later) –> Settings & Privacy –> Visibility –> Under ‘Visibility of your LinkedIn activity’ –> Turn OFF “Share Profile Updates with your Network”

2. Create an effective headline/tag line. Don’t just use the title your company gave you as that might be rather specific to a product, but rather something more focused like “Experienced Healthcare Data Engineer” or maybe something like “WordPress and SEO Consultant experienced working with small businesses” … I know this sounds cheesy, but it works. By the way, the title your company gave you most likely means very little because it doesn’t carry outside your organization.

3. Add a headshot for your profile. Let’s admit: We’re visual animals. We want to see who we’re going to be talking to. It doesn’t have to be a professional headshot, but you should be in focus and it should be kind of a closeup shot that shows your face. My recommendations would be to make sure the picture has good lighting.

4. Convert your accomplishments to first person, conversational english. DO NOT USE RESUME SPEAK here. No bullet points. As if we are talking over an adult beverage.


5. In your ‘Summary Section’ make it conversational on what you’ve done in your career so far. Something like “I provide xxxx” and “My specialities include zzzz”. Two or three paragraphs here helps quite a bit.

6. Within the Summary section, put a ‘Specialties:’ and jam it in with buzzwords here. Product Z, Confluence, JIRA, Microsoft Excel, Replacing flux capacitors, etc … jam that section in with all the buzzwords to your hearts desire. This is likely how recruiters or hiring managers may find you when they’re searching for somebody that has used certain products.

7. If you are unemployed Put ‘In Transition‘ as your current employer and write something like ‘Currently seeking new opportunities in (field of work)’ … this will tell recruiters that you’re out looking for your next role and not employed at your previous employer.

8. PERFECT SPELLING AND GRAMMAR. I cannot stress this enough. Nothing more off putting than a LinkedIn profile with a freaking spelling error! Have a friend or family member read through your profile with a fine tooth comb!

9. Customize your LinkedIn URL — this will change your URL from like to something like do this, go to Me –> View Profile –> Upper right corner click ‘Edit public profile & URL’ and click on the pencil icon under ‘Personalize the URL for your profile.’

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