Are You Linked In But Outdated?
By Zachary Durst
When working with health IT executives today, I notice that one the most important components of their professional profiles is often outdated and incomplete – their LinkedIn accounts. In today’s hyper-connected world, it is LinkedIn that acts as the first window into your professional work and thought leadership.
LinkedIn is not just for recruiters and search consultants like myself, but is the representation of your personal brand as a thought leader and executive. This means that keeping your LinkedIn profile up-to-date is even more important than updating your resume as it’s oftentimes the first thing your peers, recruiters, potential employers and those looking to partner with you will seek out.
My colleague Dan Young and I have talked about how to leverage LinkedIn in your career growth before. Recently, I had the opportunity to write a follow-up article for the HealthSystemCIO website: LinkedIn But Outdated: The Critical Mistakes Executives Are Making. Below is a summary of my advice from that article on why keeping your profile updated is important and how to do it:
- LinkedIn is your free ad. LinkedIn gives you an opportunity to advertise that expertise you’ve garnered over time, but only if you’ve kept that expertise up-to-date.
- Influencers matter on LinkedIn. An updated LinkedIn profile gives you credibility when speaking to a topic that’s of particular passion.
- Have a (current) photo! Have a professional picture of yourself taken and use that for your profile picture. The ability to put a face to a name is what helps others to feel connected to you.
- Keep your role current. It may seem silly, but make sure you have your actual current position and position description on your LinkedIn account.
- Use buzzwords. People will often use buzzwords to search for and help identify the leaders they want to follow.
- Have real numbers to share. Share specific data about what you’ve accomplished.
For leaders looking to increase their profile and presence amongst their peers and to grow their own name recognition, LinkedIn can be a powerful tool . . . if kept updated.