15 Things You Should Never Write On Your LinkedIn Profile

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8. Nothing.
Your profile may be chock full of your past job experiences, but this doesn’t really do much good if there are no descriptions to accompany them. “Spend the time to at least write a paragraph or a couple of sentences for every position,” says Allen. “I can make some assumptions from the job title, but tell me about it, tell me your perspectives.”

A good job description is focused on your accomplishments. “If you helped raise revenue, quantify that, put it on your resume,” says Soto. “If you won an award for being the best new employee, put that on there as well. You want to talk about what you’re accomplishing in addition to your job description.”

Well, what if you work at the desk at a gym, where your biggest accomplishment is wiping down some cardio equipment? “Just be honest. Talk about what you did,” says Soto. “When you’re working as a college student that happens all the time. What that tells an employer is that this person is a hard worker, that they’re working while maintaining a 3.8 GPA. Don’t try to go over the top with it. Sometimes it just is what it is.”

9. “I practice witchcraft.”
You might have some really – uh – different, intense, controversial interests, and that’s great. But when it comes to listing this stuff on your LinkedIn profile, Allen says that there are two schools of thought. “One is don’t put anything out there that might cost you a job or offend people. And the second is, you wouldn’t want to work with someone who had a problem with that anyway.” Either way, he stresses that LinkedIn is “business casual, not fully casual.” So you might want to keep your Satan worshipping on the down low. 


10. “I’m the greatest employee in company history and am single-handedly responsible for its success.”
If this is true, let your employers figure that out and brag about you. But making such outlandish statements yourself can only lead to raised eyebrows. “You want to make sure that you’re being factual about your experiences and you’re not trying to fluff it up and make it grander than it is,” says Soto. “If you’re a college student you’re not expected to have CEO experience. So it’s better to be honest. That way employers that are looking for something specific will hopefully be able to find it.”

11. “I worked for this company!” (…but you actually didn’t.)
“It bugs employers are if you connect to a company without ever having worked there,” says Alba. “Some people end up doing it by mistake. Even on the LinkedIn company page, there are a lot of people that don’t work there. So it’s a design issue – they can’t even figure it out.” Do yourself a favor and make sure this “design issue” isn’t making you its victim!

Things like this don’t just happen by accident, though. “You want to make sure that you’re posting factual experiences,” says Soto. “Like a regular resume, you want to make sure that you’re being honest about your experience and your involvement so that it wouldn’t be considered fraudulent.” So make sure your LinkedIn profile is free from bad information.

12. “My first job ever was scooping ice cream at a snack bar. My next job was…”
“I don’t put on my first professional job experience at Taco Bell, because it’s not relevant,” says Alba. “Your resume is not your obituary. People tend to want to put everything they’re ever done on there, and have someone say, ‘Oh my God, they’re so amazing and here’s why!’ That doesn’t happen. A resume is a marketing document. You’re trying to accomplish something; get the interview, get the introduction. It’s not about bragging about everything you’ve ever done.”

13 & 14. “@cutiepatootie11 That party last night was such a sh*tshow!”
This one’s a two-fer, folks. Mistake 1: Linking social media to your profile. “I wouldn’t link your Twitter, let’s say, to your LinkedIn profile if you’re not posting about relevant, professional type things,” says Soto. “If you’re posting about what you thought about last night’s game or what’s going on in the presidential race, that’s not something that should be posted on your profile.” However, if your Twitter is specifically designated for professional tweets about the industry you’re looking to break into, linking your accounts would be acceptable.

Mistake 2: Talking about inappropriate activities. “Don’t do anything that, as they say, would embarrass your grandmother,” says Allen. This means keeping it clean, including in your profile photo.

“I saw a woman in her bra last week in her profile picture. I mean, give me a break,” says Alba. “She looked like a stripper. This isn’t Facebook or MySpace.”

15. “I’m looking for a job in a law firm. But check out my blog about cats!”
“If you have a blog on knitting but that has nothing to do with your career, it might not be the best thing to connect it [with your LinkedIn profile],” says Soto. It’s important to keep your profile focused and full of relevant information and experiences. So even if you love your side projects, you should probably just keep them to yourself.

 

Follow these tips and your LinkedIn profile will be in tip-top shape in no time!

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About The Author

Darci is a senior at the University of Miami with a double major in journalism and sport administration. Born and raised in the suburbs of New York City, she has worked as both opinion and assistant sports editor of The Miami Hurricane (the campus newspaper), in addition to internships with Xanga.com and Scholarships.com. When she's not in class or at her job in the swanky UM wellness center, Darci enjoys reading, baking, drinking English breakfast tea, watching endless marathons of Castle, and sleeping. Her favorite things include London, Bon Jovi, Harry Potter, and the Olympics, and she hangs her hat on having been a volunteer for London 2012 during her semester abroad there. She hopes to continue following the Olympics around the world, and invites you to follow her (on Twitter, at least!) @darcisays.