3 reasons why you need a strong LinkedIn Experience section

recruitersWhile I’m amazed that some people don’t have a LinkedIn Summary, I’m just as befuddled by folks who don’t see the value of a strong LinkedIn Experience section. When employers and visitors see a profile that lacks details in this vital section, the letdown is like air escaping a balloon.

Here’s the thing, a stunning Summary is great, but when your Experience section comprises of bare essentials, such as your titles, company names, and dates of employment, you’re LinkedIn profile lacks the punch that propels you to the top of the list.

Many believe the Experience section is the most important part of your profile, as it includes your years of experience, accomplishments, a story of what you did for each position, and keywords for search engine optimization (SEO). So here are three reasons why you need a strong LinkedIn Experience section.

Your experience section needs to tell a better story. A quick fix of copying the content of your résumé to your profile is the first step in building your Experience section; however, you’re not done yet. You still have to modify your profile to make it more of a networking document. This means your point of view should be first person and, of course, include quantified results.

Take, for example, an accomplishment statement from a résumé I recently read: Trained 5 office staff on new computer software, increasing production by 75%. It has the action statement and a quantified result, but it lacks excitement, the excitement you get from a LinkedIn profile.

Instead: I extended my end-user expertise by volunteering to train 5 office staff on our new database software. All members of the team were more productive as a result of my patient training style, increasing the team’s output by 75%.

Your position doesn’t tell it all.  You’re a director, CEO, or CFO, so you think that says it all. Wrong! Executive Resume Writer, Laura Smith-Proulx believes the more relevant information, the better; particularly when you’re trying to differentiate yourself from other executives. She writes: 

“The key to a strategic message in your CFO résumé is to do MORE with the details – taking the hard facts of budgets managed, teams directed, or cost savings achieved to fold in personal brand messages.”

At the very least, your leadership as a director of an organization plays an essential role in its success. What is the scope of your authority? How have you helped the organization grow? Have you contributed to the community or charities? Have you turned around failing companies and made them more profitable? Remember, you’re representing the organization. Or perhaps you’re passively looking for another job.

The power of LinkedIn is greater than you think. LinkedIn’s search engine is extremely powerful. If you have the proper, and numerous, skills (keywords), your chances of being found are great. Don’t forget to emphasize the quantified accomplishments!

Businesses are looking to connect or employ people with expertise; and although you have what they need, without the skills listed your message isn’t crystal clear. An organization would like to pay you to talk about how you developed a fund-raising process that resulted in hundreds of thousands of dollars, but your Experience section is nothing more than a place mat. Lost opportunity.

Suppose you find yourself out of a job and suddenly need to connect with others who can help you in a big way. Rushing to create an Experience section that warrants the assistance you need is a bit late and will lengthen your job search.

These are three reasons why you require an Experience section that is strong and worthy of your greatness. Your Summary is a great start; now you need to follow it with an Experience section to support it.

Next we’ll look at 4 reasons why your LinkedIn profile needs a strong Media section


10 thoughts on “3 reasons why you need a strong LinkedIn Experience section

  1. Richard

    Loved your 10 important things for your resume. Wowing people is not too easy. Spelling errors like Pubic Relations instead of Public Relations happen also every day of the week to me. It is the spice of life and it may get you more attention. Thanks, it makes us all feel human.
    Bets wishes,


  2. Pingback: 10 steps toward a successful LinkedIn plan (Part 1) | Things Career Related

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  4. Above The Rim

    Bob, Great post again. The information is great value as always. There is one area that I do disagree with. You state that it is necessary to write in first person. I do not necessarily agree, as I have seen many great LinkedIn profiles written in the third person. I believe this is appropriate, as when you go on websites, and look at executive bios, they are almost always in the third person. The important thing for me is that your summary, and your experience tell a story. Why do you do what you do? What is your passion behind it? What is your subject matter expertise? What are you known for? What are your accomplishments that speak to your passion, subject matter expertise and your reputation.

    Great post again, and thanks for the dialogue.


    1. Things Career Related Post author

      Thanks for your comments, Greg. I do lean toward first person, but I also state that third person can fit, as well. Your summary is written in third person and it works well for you, as you are an executive coach. I learned my lesson about strongly stating my preference during a workshop, while sitting beside me was a person who used third person point of view in her summary. Needless to say I didn’t receive a glowing evaluation from her. Thanks as always for your thoughtful comments.


  5. Above The Rim

    Bob, Thanks for your comments. I run into a lot of people that say your LinkedIn bio should not be in third person, because your resume is not in third person. I have the very strong belief that your LinkedIn profile should not ever be viewed as your online resume, because LinkedIn is so much more than a job search tool. I believe we should keep in mind that our target audience is not just recruiters, but the entire network. I don’t think that first person is wrong, or third person is the only way, but as I stated above, the most important thing is, how are you articulating your brand, your story. Thanks again for the dialogue, and keep the awesome information coming. I need to start blogging consistently like you.


    1. Things Career Related Post author

      I was just thinking about you and how your last post was very good. You should blog more. I think a basketball motif would be a good way to go. I try to weave my personal life into my posts because I like to tell a little story into as many of my posts as possible, many about my kids or my customers. Sometimes this gives me ideas of what to write. I think you already have one on the way, Why Writing Your LinkedIn Profile in Third Person is a Great Way to Articulate Your Brand. The title’s a bit long.


  6. Pingback: 4 reasons why your LinkedIn profile needs a strong Media section | Things Career Related

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