When was the last time you touched your LinkedIn profile Summary? Was it eight years ago? Longer? Does it fit you still? Maybe it’s like a pair of corduroys that are out of style, more suited for the ’80s. I bet it’s time to revamp your Summary. Blow it up.
You might be thinking, “Why fix something when it ain’t broken?” My response to this is how do you know it ain’t broken? Maybe no one told you your Summary doesn’t demonstrate your value; didn’t want to hurt your feelings.
If your profile Summary is similar to many of the ones I see, it lacks creativity. In fact, it resembles a résumé. This is what I call the bare minimum. You’re telling the world you don’t give a rat’s ass about your online image.
This will be liberating. And when you’re done you’ll celebrate with a massage, or a shopping spree, or a five mile hike, or whatever turns you on. Here are four elements of a kick-ass Summary.
1. Opening statement that grab visitors’ attention. What is the Why for what you do? For me it’s about how unemployment is a major impediment to peoples’ happiness, and what I do to help them get through unemployment.
Here’s one from one of my clients which illustrates his knowledge of the industry and the value he brings to companies.
Advanced materials and processes can form the basis for a product portfolio that will generate repeat revenues for years to come – if a company is able to leverage those innovations. I have been fortunate to participate in several technology firms where we did exactly that.
Then he backs up his claim with examples in his Experience section.
Important note: with the new LinkedIn profile, only the first three lines, or approximately 50 words, are displayed on a laptop. Therefore it must grab the readers attention immediately, show value off the bat.
2. The way you attack this problem. This is the How you do what you do. If you go this route, yours might be, attacking hunger, managing data, writing compelling copy, programming software, etc.
Here’s one from one of my clients on how he leads his sales force.
As a VP of sales, my leadership style empowers employees to succeed, while also providing the support they need. It’s been said that I’m a leader who commands excellence from my employees in a fair and consistent manner. These are only a few traits of a successful VP of Sales.
I appreciate the fact that he is a successful VP of sales who understands the value of treating his employers with respect. This comes through in this statement.
3. Gotta back it up. These are the accomplishments with quantified Results. People won’t care what you do as much as they care about how well you do it. “What about having accomplishments in my Experience section?” you may wonder.
‘S alright. You’ll have other accomplishments to tout and there really is no harm in repeating some information. Make your accomplishments vague. Like, “Increase visibility of organizations through social media and digital marketing.” Or be more specific.
Here are a few accomplishment statements my client lists in his Summary statement.
- Re-engineered the procurement function resulting in a 20% reduction in head count and over 50% reduction in OT costs during a period in which volume increased by 22%.
- Cut month-end closing cycle from 7 to 2 days by implementing cycle count procedures, thus improving the accuracy of book to physical reconciliations.
- Reduced the frequency of complete physical inventories from a monthly to a quarterly basis, cutting overtime labor costs and rental expenditures.
My client has plenty of accomplishments to tout in his Experience section. By stating a few in your Summary, you’re immediately showing value.
4. How do people find you? This is where you you state your call to action. You’ll include your email address and, if you like, your telephone number. Don’t make people hunt for you. Recruiters, hiring managers, and potential customers want to find you quickly.
Here’s a perfect example of a call to action, clearly illustrating this person’s desire to be found by people who require his services.
Showing your eagerness to be found, can also be stated at the start of Your Summary or even the middle. This isn’t as common as listing contact information at the end.
These are four elements of a kick-ass LinkedIn profile Summary. You may structure your Summary differently. What matters is that you show value to an employer. If you don’t accomplish this, what’s the sense of having one?
Photo: Flickr, marcellospeziali
This post originally appeared in recruiter.com.