Think of this space as your personal billboard. If used correctly, your LinkedIn profile could bring you just as much exposure as having a billboard along a busy highway. However, the same rules of social media don’t necessary apply to LinkedIn. This space requires a certain level of finesse and professionalism.

Here are some mistakes you need to avoid making on LinkedIn: 

1. Copy pasting from your resume

If LinkedIn is just an extension of your resume, the same information should be good enough, correct? Wrong. LinkedIn can be more than just an extended resume if you word your experiences properly. Using active voice and maintaining a conversational tone can help make sure your message gets across. 

2. Adding or approving almost anyone as a connection

It’s great to get connection requests from people you don’t know but when you start blindly approving those requests – you may be making a mistake. Reflect on the purpose of your profile, and approve requests accordingly. 

3. Inappropriate profile picture

Many sources advise getting a professional headshot for your profile picture. However, if you can’t get one done, just make sure you are photographed in work appropriate attire. Skip the selfies for this platform. 

4. No privacy settings

Do you really want everyone on your profile to know when you’re on the job hunt? Adjust your privacy settings so you can choose the activity you want to be seen or otherwise. This is just smart thinking. You can use LinkedIn’s Open Candidates feature as well. This allows you to privately signal recruiters that you’re open to new job opportunities. Untick the ‘notify your network’ section and you’re pretty much set. 

5. Posting irrelevant content

LinkedIn is a professional space. Best to save the meme sharing for other more casual social platforms. As far as content goes, share, post and take part in the conversation of topics that interest you. 

6. Inactive

At any point, an opportunity could come knocking. When it does, you want your profile to reflect your online presence. You want to come across as someone who has been staying in the loop with industry updates, someone who is actively sharing relatable content and someone who is using their LinkedIn profile as it was intended. 

7. Oversharing

This isn’t Facebook. You don’t need to post minute-to-minute status updates, share your feelings or post your favourite Buzzfeed listicle. Keep things work/industry related and you’ll be good to go. It’s always important to keep in mind which message works best on LinkedIn compared to other social media sites. 

8. Always asking for favours or jobs

Your connections are not at your disposal. You can’t think it is okay to immediately ask any connection for a job or a favour. This is highly unprofessional. Instead, strike up a conversation on what you’d like to accomplish. 

9. Does not network

So you’ve got a carefully curated list of connections, you’re posting and sharing great content that’s also getting shared, but you don’t seem to be using your LinkedIn profile to network. Mistake. Talk to the people on your list – even it’s just to share a good article – it’s a start. 

10. Sending generic connection request messages

Did you know that you are able to customise the message that gets sent along with your connection request. When you’re adding connections on the desktop, you can write a personal message to the person you’re requesting to connect with. This is an opportunity for you to make a better first impression. 

11. No summary or headline

Using standard (boring) job titles as your headline or not writing a summary for your profile could be two other mistakes you are making on LinkedIn. Remember how an elevator pitch comes in handy? Your summary or headline could make it easier for people to identify you or look for your expertise. 

12. Posting negative comments

LinkedIn is a professional and positive space. Don’t create bad blood or spread negativity by posting nasty comments on other people’s conversations or articles. Maintain a positive presence even if the situation is dicey. Do not engage with negativity on the site. 

13. No credible recommendations

So you’ve got a bunch of skills listed on your profile which looks impressive enough. But, there is something missing. There’s only one or two recommendations for your skills? You need more endorsements. One way to do this is to give other connections recommendations with the hope that they return the favour. 

14. Typos

Want to avoid detection by the grammar police? Double check your posts and proofread the heck out of your profile and summary. Typos are a no-no, even more so on LinkedIn when you’ve got plenty of other professionals that come in contact with your profile or shares.

15. Your LinkedIn profile and your resume don’t match

So your LinkedIn is somehow way more detailed than your actual resume. If you think you can get away with embellishment on LinkedIn, think again. All it takes is one person to spot inconsistencies or an outright lie in your history for your credibility to come into question. Don’t make the mistake of lying on LinkedIn to look more accomplished/impressive. 

Polish your LinkedIn profile and make sure you’re not making any of these mistakes before you apply for a job on Jobstore.com!

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