Write a LinkedIn Summary That Recruiters Will Love
Is your LinkedIn Summary just an empty space on your profile?
Are you wondering what the best way to write a LinkedIn Summary is?
The LinkedIn Summary is like an advertisement for the rest of your profile.
In this article, you’ll learn how to write a great LinkedIn Summary that keeps hiring managers coming back for more.
LinkedIn is a pretty big deal. If I’m the one doing the hiring, there’s no way I’d even consider somebody who doesn’t have a developed LinkedIn profile. But there are many people still who have a LinkedIn profile, but haven’t bothered to write a complete summary. In 2016, this is a cardinal sin.
In my opinion, LinkedIn will one day fully replace the standard CV. In fact, I only use my resume to direct traffic to my LinkedIn profile. I do this because LinkedIn allows me to paint a complete picture of my experience, including photos and other files, whereas a resume typically only displays text (unless you make an infographic resume like a true baller).
If written correctly, a fully developed LinkedIn profile can bring recruiters to you via the powers of the Internet. So if you are now feeling inadequate or otherwise full of LinkedIn envy, don’t fret. I’m going to give you some tips that will help you write a LinkedIn summary that will help you make more connections with people who can help your career the most.
The LinkedIn Summary: Where to Start?
Whenever I go set out to write a LinkedIn Summary, I use a pretty simple system. I try to answer questions that people would likely have when reading a person’s LinkedIn Summary. If you write from the perspective of an outsider who knows nothing about you, you’ll be able to create a summary that gives them the information they need to make decisions.
Like I said earlier, it’s a simple system – one you’re likely familiar with: who, what, where, when, why and how. These are the main questions you need to answer with your summary. Inside each main question are several sub questions that you could potentially answer as well, which I’ll detail below. Before that, I want to quickly cover a few big “no-no’s” to avoid in your LinkedIn Summary and on your LinkedIn Profile in general.
How Not To Write a LinkedIn Summary: The No-no’s
1. The Objective Section
Instead of describing your objective, tell people how valuable you can be in your LinkedIn summary. Your objective becomes immediately clear based on the jobs you are applying for and the jobs you have done in the past.
2. Irrelevant Hobbies
Don’t list hobbies on your resume or your LinkedIn profile. Save space for more relevant information!
3. Age Indicators
Don’t list those positions you had a long time ago, and leave off graduation dates. Age discrimination is real on both ends of the spectrum, so focus on your ageless qualities first and foremost.
You will be asked for references if you make it to the next step in the interview process. However, on LinkedIn, try to collect as many recommendations as you can.
5. Generic Information
Even though you may be trying to fill a niche, generic information on you résumé makes your experience sound flat and uninspired.
6. Spelling and Grammar Mistakes
Read everything in your LinkedIn Summary out loud after you’ve written it to help catch any errors. These are a deal breaker for many hiring managers!
Who are you? When writing your LinkedIn Summary, try to give people an idea of who you are and where you are going. This is more than listing your name. Try to infuse some personality into your writing so a person can “get to know you” in a sense.
Some “Who” Questions to Answer:
➤ What motivates you?
➤ What defines your career?
➤ Where have you been?
➤ Where are you going?
What have you done and what are you planning on doing? You can also talk about what kind of skills you have developed or what excites you about you work.
Some “What” Questions to Answer:
➤ What do you do for a living?
➤ What jobs are you qualified for?
➤ What makes you credible in your profession?
➤ What excites you professionally?
The “where” of your career. Location is important for a number of reasons. Try to paint a picture so people can understand how the “where” factors in to your experience.
Some “Where” Questions to Answer:
➤ What countries have you worked in?
➤ Would you like to relocate?
➤ What companies have you worked for?
➤ Where are you looking to work?
The when can be tricky depending on how perfect your job history is. Try to give broad ranges when describing how long you spent at a job. It’s always better to speak in terms of accomplishment rather than length of service.
Some “When” Questions to Answer:
➤ How much experience do you have in your industry?
➤ How long you’ve been studying/researching a certain skill?
➤ When did you last complete a training course?
➤ When did you last complete a project you are proud of?
The why is meant to give people an idea behind your motivations. If hiring managers can get a sense of what motivates you, they can more easily see how you could fit into a role they are trying to fill.
Some “Why” Questions to Answer:
➤ Why are you more qualified than others in your field?
➤ Why did you take certain jobs?
➤ Why did you get into a certain industry?
➤ Why did you leave a certain industry?
How have you achieved what you achieved? Try to give numbers if possible – always make your achievements as measurable as you can. Answering “how” questions generally helps hiring managers understand the scale of your accomplishments.
Some “How” Questions to Answer:
➤ How’s your written communication?
➤ How well do you understand your subject matter?
➤ How many sales did you make?
➤ How did you become proficient in a certain skill?
Make it Your Own
Besides following the above recommendations, answering questions, and writing well, you want to make sure your LinkedIn Summary does one more important thing: reflect YOUR personality. I often see LinkedIn Summaries that are written to satisfy a niche rather than to actually summarize the person in question. Resist this urge! Above all, do you. That’s the thing that will make you unique and thus make you more attractive to potential employers. Go get em tiger.
Did I miss anything? Feel free to tell me on LinkedIn or comment below!