6 ways to create a powerful Linkedin Profile

The latest survey data says a full 94% of recruiters today use social media in their recruitment efforts, across all roles from cooks to financial analysts. And yet people are puzzled, or at least, skeptical as to why tools like LinkedIn are such a game changer.
What a brilliant tool Linkedin is!!! It has transformed the professional world we live in. Primarily by providing each of us an opportunity to create our own “Personal Brand”. An online resume or sorts you can say! A space wherein we can showcase all our professional skills & achievements, some which we often don’t get to share with our employers or colleagues.
All in all, its a powerful tool that can help us be found, while we grow professionally. These days, it takes more than a resume to stand out in a competitive job market. A profile that grabs attention on professional network site like LinkedIn could make a difference. Yet there are so many people with a horridly shabby linkedin profile, something just the opposite of their current professional stature and it is disappointing.
Perhaps, like any other online tool, to make the most of it you need to be make some efforts. So, here are some pointers you can adapt to shine on, like many other professionals who have created for themselves a ‘Stellar’ Linkedin Profile.

Here are my top 6 pointers you can use to create a brilliant Linkedin Profile for yourself:

  1. Complete your profile: Spend some time on creating a complete linkedin profile. Its like making a presentation on your own self, hence its gotta be good! Add all the experience, education, publication elements, add a suitable profile photo – please avoid selfies with pouts & sunglasses. You need a clear picture, something pleasing, if a professional look is possible – brilliant, if not even a regular one within the decorum of this platform is a good fit. A “no picture” profile is step one to loosing the game. Have a powerful headline – something intriguing & inviting. If you have your own blogs – do share the links, they come in very handy when one needs to read through your abilities. If you have some special talents or awards you have won, do mention those as well, don’t hesitate to show your multi faceted personality, mostly skills & achievements like these add that missing spark to your profile. even if you are a fresher, there is a lot you can add to your profile from your educational aspect. Make sure you fill in as much real & true information as possible to let your audience get the overview of your personality. Avoid misinterpretation of any sorts as in this online world it will comeback haunting you :). Also, Being in India you can skip adding contact numbers to avoid stalkers or unwanted people chasing you.
  2. Customize your public profile URL: Make sure you customize your public profile URL, it becomes easier to share it on your resume or sales presentations. Apart from that it looks far more professional to have an easily accessible profile link. Also choose wisely what you wish to display in your public profile from the settings tab.
  3. Add connections: a brilliant profile is of no use if you have no connections. Hence you must take the effort to find people you have worked, studied or met with. the key here is to add people you know, not random strangers. Because sending random connection requests may lead you to get blocked, as the recipient of the invitation does have an option to click on “I dont know this person”, if you receive 5 such responses your profile may get blocked to send any further requests. Hence its better to stick to adding people only who you know from your work experience or friends, or classmates too. Interacting in groups also leads you to get seen & receive invitations. But you must look through each profile before you accept the request. After all you are here to build a stellar profile hence you must pay attention to what kind of people on your connection list too. right?
  4. Join Relevant Groups: Groups are a great place to find like minded professionals & interact with them. It is your window to the world & the your stage to shine on. Find groups with common interests like past colleges, organizations, or fields of business, etc. You can join those groups, understand what kinds of interactions are happening there & participate too. If you have created relevant content, dont miss out a chance to share those as well. Such groups help you find clients, jobs and many such opportunities to grow professionally.
  5. Ask for recommendations: Do not hesitate to ask your current & past colleagues to write you a recommendation. Such recommendations add a validation of sorts to your profile, especially when it comes from experience professionals. So go ahead and write a request to your seniors who can share a few good words about you.
  6. Listen & Talk: All of this is a waste if you have a dormant profile, someone who probably posts once in a year. No that wont work anymore! Times have changed, people are using tools and ways to stay at the top of their linkedin game. Make sure you stay updated with what is happening in the network of your connections, Listen carefully, you never know where you could add your inputs. Look for opportunities to interact, like on somebody’s job change, birthday, a new role or even a group discussion. This helps you be at the top of a prospective employer or client’s mind. Make sure your communication is clear and professional, slangs, shortforms or inappropriate language just make you a misfit for a platform like this. So You may not have the time to do this every day but every week or so is a good pace. I shall leave that to you to plan out based on your current professional needs.

See you on Linkedin!

STOP using Linkedin like a Dating Site!

Now that we are all taking about “workplace harassment”, I couldn’t help but bring this up.

It has been almost a decade I made a profile on Linkedin, with a sheer intention to highlight my professional abilities & skills to be able to reach out to professionals across industries.
Like me there a million women who use this tool to be found by their dream organizations and also stay on the same page as their industry counterparts across the world.
Linkedin is a purely a professional site, its design & features try to not make it like any other casual site such as facebook or instagram.

Despite this understanding there has been not one month in this decade that I have not received a message which is breaking into my personal space, making me uncomfortable & screaming “CREEPY” from men. Messages range from requests to giveaway my number so that ” They could call or whatsapp” or telling me how beautiful my photo looks.
 Ladies, how many of you are in the same boat??
Sometimes there were messages asking me to meet up since this man was in town, REALLY??
 Most of these men use recruitment or networking as their shield.
 And yes stalking follows soon after with repeating “Hi’s and hello’s”. Personal questions like are you married or Available, where do you live? Lets meet for some coffee? Your DP is so sexy!!!!
Sometimes a persistent one will do anything to get your number and will make that call to tell you how you are so pretty for your age and blah, blah, blah (You get the drift).
If you are an ex-colleague I understand or if I know you through somebody fair enough but if you are someone I have just connected with, and have no valid reason to catch up with, not right!
Before you make these bold moves,YOU NEED TO ASK ME FOR MY PERMISSION, RIGHT?!
If a woman allows you to get close, fair enough but if she said No, treat it as a final “NO”.
To such men, LinkedIn becomes a platter of desirable women to stalk,or harass, apart from their very own offices and despite being “Happily”married in many cases.

I have learned how to deal with this in my own ways, but what about women who have not?
What is so difficult for these men to understand?
I am a professional and here on this site for a purpose, if you want to date me find me on Tinder or somewhere else; if you don’t find me there, it probably means I am not looking for the same thing as you! What they don’t seem to understand is also a single screenshot of your creepy messages, could be posted on LinkedIn  or shared with the police and it can ruin all you future career prospects, along with your charming reputation.
Sometimes I feel, what a woman puts on her resume or skill-set, it all  boils down how desirable is she?

Every professional has a right to be able to display what they have to offer professionally and likewise there is logical protocol to reach out to one. If you have a job offer please declare it or send a JD, being too secretive about everything about a job you are offering makes you look less professional and more creepy.
Networking! yes, it is the buzz, but you’d know better how to do that correctly, pushing for a coffee date, hmm not happening!
Over the years I have met some great professionals on this platform and have interacted with them often, I have learnt a lot and wish to do this always. Can we all try and keep the sanctity of this platform? 

MEN, this is what  I have to say to you – Not all men are like this, I know that well , but there are plenty such creeps out there. This Could be your colleague or friend or almost anyone from your team you know. If you thing this practice is incorrect, please intervene, teach the others a word or two about maintaining a professional decorum. Teach these boys to download the real dating sites and not waste their time & effort ruining their professional image.

WOMEN, this is what  I have to say to you – Speak up, don’t hesitate even for a minute to report such matters to LinkedIn, in the person’s organization and the cops eventually. Most of the men are encouraged because they know the woman won’t react much no matter how low he stoops.You must give the man a chance to back off, but if you feel, its high time, do what your gut tells you! 

LEADERS, this is what  I have to say to you – As leaders you must make sure everyone under your team or the brand name of your organisation understands the implications of such inapproriate acts. Educate them, make them understand , make them aware. After all, this is the least you can do build equality in the professional world!