Most job seekers, from CEOs and CMOs to entry-level workers, know the benefits of LinkedIn for online networking. But although most tech-savvy professionals utilize LinkedIn to build connections and seek fresh talent, few take advantage of everything this professional networking tool has to offer. The true benefit of online networking doesn’t lie in creating a profile that equates to a sales pitch, getting the most connections, or “online stalking” prospective companies. The true networking power of LinkedIn lies in its ability to recommend, build, and endorse specific skills.
Building Skills on LinkedIn
You wouldn’t email a hiring manager an executive resume that failed to enumerate your qualifications. So why hit save on your LinkedIn profile – which is, in essence, your online resume – without first listing your skills? It’s astounding how many intelligent businesspeople – from board members to COOs – upload partial profiles on LinkedIn.
LinkedIn recommends that business professionals list specific, quantifiable skills on their profiles. The more finely tuned the listed skills, the more quickly headhunters (and LinkedIn’s search algorithms) will see the value in your experience. Effectively utilize the “skills” section on your LinkedIn profile by supplementing your hard-earned professional skill set with specific, endorsable soft skills. Valued skills vary from industry to industry, but LinkedIn research concludes that certain soft skills have a higher rate of return on job inquiries.
- Levelheadedness under pressure
- Analytical thinking
The Power of Endorsements
Writing an excellent LinkedIn profile is only the beginning of creating a strong personal brand. When a colleague feels you excel in a certain area, they can endorse a correlating skill. This tells recruiters you’re not “resume-padding” and allows coworkers to easily advocate your talents. A few things to remember about LinkedIn endorsements:
- Endorsements are a two-way street. If a colleague endorses a skill on your profile, common courtesy dictates you endorse one of their skills as well.
- That said, every endorsement reflects on your professional image. Don’t endorse someone on LinkedIn if you wouldn’t recommend them in person.
- Coworkers can endorse skills that are not listed on your profile. You can later add those skills (and the attached endorsement) to your LinkedIn page.
- Users with robust skills and endorsements are 13% more likely to find new careers.
- More specific skill endorsements (e.g. endorsing SEO instead of Marketing) build better professional connections.
- If an endorsement doesn’t enrich your personal brand, remove it from your profile.
Have questions about creating a powerful profile on LinkedIn? Call Executive Resumes Atlanta.