Whether you’re finishing up high school, in the middle of a higher-ed program, or a young adult looking to level up your career—making sure that you have an up-to-date and optimized LinkedIn profile is essential.
As a part of Golisano Institute’s hyper-focused and results-driven program, you will be connecting with entrepreneurs, employers, and business leaders. Make sure you’re prepared to cultivate your growing network by incorporating these LinkedIn profile best practices.
1. Make sure your profile photo looks professional.
LinkedIn is the world of professional connections. Considering this context, it’s wise to avoid selfies or cropped group shots. If you don’t have a professional headshot, a great alternative is to dress as you would for an interview and take a photo using your phone’s self-timer in a well-lit, uncluttered room.
The most important thing to keep in mind is that this will be someone’s first impression of you in this professional online space. Be sure to make it count!
2. Create a well-crafted “About” section.
This part of your profile is essential for giving your connections a brief, engaging description of who you are, what you’ve done, and where you’re headed. Breaking up longer text into smaller paragraphs will help with readability and organization.
For those who are earlier on in their career, or still in school, don’t feel intimidated if you do not yet have a long list of accomplishments. Focus on shining a light on your goals, what’s driving you forward, and your past achievements.
3. Embrace your work and volunteer experience.
If you’re early on in your career, there is a good chance that some of your work experience may have been seasonal, temporary, or even volunteering. There is nothing wrong with that—in fact, these work experiences can be great assets. In any of these instances, be sure to write the descriptions in a way that frames the value you specifically added in each role.
4. Double check for grammar.
The single most important thing you can do for your LinkedIn profile, resume, or anything else you put forth in the professional realm is to double and triple-check everything for spelling and grammar. A well-worded profile is the quickest way to make a good first impression.
5. Get out there and use it.
Once your profile is set up and ready to go, the best thing you can do next is actually use it. Connect with peers. Follow leaders. Engage, share what you’re learning, and ask questions. LinkedIn was made to network, and networking is all about building relationships.
Interested in learning more about the professional network you can build while at Golisano Institute? Read more about our innovative, hands-on approach to business education here.
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“The opportunity is out there. You just have to find it.”
Tom Golisano, Founder