6 Things Never To Do on LinkedIn

Say you’re looking for a job

This may seem fairly obvious. But it’s quite common – I’ve clicked on a fair few profiles where someone has innocently uploaded their CV profile, only to forget it included an objective like ‘I am now looking for a new opportunity to work with a progressive organisation and fulfil my goal of becoming a CFO’. Even if you are looking for work openly, better to invite connections than post you are ‘seeking opportunities’. Recruiters and hiring managers will always go for passive job seekers over active job seekers.

Upload Your CV

Which leads me nicely onto my second point. LinkedIn is not a job seeking site for uploading your CV, it is a professional networking site. You need both your content and approach to be different to a CV – as they are not used in the same way. Think of LinkedIn as a teaser – something that makes people want to connect with you and understand what you do now. You don’t need to go into the same level of detail as a CV. Critically, you need to consider that actually other people you work with (for example, customers, partners, stakeholders may be looking at this too). What is it that you want them to know about you?

Comment on something personal or ‘like’ items that are inappropriate for the platform

LinkedIn isn’t Facebook. There is nothing more cringe inducing than clicking onto LinkedIn to see one of your contacts has liked something totally inappropriate, or even worse, commented on something highly personal (or at best, certainly not work related). It can fell credible reputations in seconds. Think before you click – is it really worth that 2 minute rant?

Post inspirational quotes

Don’t get me wrong, I love a quote. But not when I see them every day on LinkedIn. The trend for inspirational quotes is still going strong – but really, what does it achieve by you posting them to your network? Better to post a good news story or some bit of leading-edge or thought provoking content relevant to your profession. This is what will get you noticed.

Place confidential information on your profile

It’s actually quite easy to accidentally do this. You may place a project, client name or revenue number on line that isn’t actually public knowledge. Or, if you have uploaded/appropriated some information from your CV, check it for public sensitivity. For example, you might not want to be so overt about performance management items/redundancies and cost cutting online as you are in your CV. If you’re not sure, take it out.

Use a picture of you in the pub as your profile photo

Lastly, a seemingly obvious one, but those dark background, starry eye head shots still abound online. Don’t do it! If you haven’t got the means to get a professional photo done, it doesn’t mean you can’t get a half decent amateur photo up there. Ask a colleague, partner or friend to take a good quality photo of you against a light white/grey background.


And don’t forget to smile!


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