Virtually every technology executive LinkedIn profile has the basics.
But are you using LinkedIn to maximum advantage? To get the most out of your LinkedIn profile, make sure you do these four things:
1. Complete Your Profile.
Your profile is the “front door” to your LinkedIn account. First impressions matter — so make sure you’ve made your technology executive profile as complete as possible. As an added benefit, your LinkedIn profile generally ranks high in Google search results for your name, so make sure your profile is up-to-date, accurate, and fully populated with information about you.
POWER TIP: Your LinkedIn profile should complement — not duplicate — your résumé. Be especially careful to ensure the two are in sync, as prospective employers are likely to Google you and will compare the two.
2. Grow Your Connections.
There are two schools of thought when it comes to LinkedIn profile connections for technology executives. You can choose to connect selectively — accepting invitations only from those you know and trust — or you can use LinkedIn to grow the network of people you know. You can connect with people you meet through Groups, comments and posts in your feed, and get introduced to people you don’t yet know “in real life.”
Brainstorm who you knew and worked with at all of the companies you’ve been at. Then send out connection requests.
A good rule of thumb is to shoot for having at least 500 connections. More is better, but anything below 500 and you’re really not going to be taking full advantage of the platform.
POWER TIP: The power of networking lies in “friends of friends,” so the larger your network, the easier it will be to connect with someone you don’t know (yet). Remember the principal of “six degrees of separation.”
3. Give To Get.
Authentic, genuine Recommendations can make or break a LinkedIn technology executive profile (just like references can for a job candidate). Select a handful of people in your network and write Recommendations for them, without asking for one in return. You will be surprised at how many people will reciprocate.
POWER TIP: Make sure your Recommendations are specific and detailed. When reading the Recommendation, you should be able to tell exactly who it was written about. Quantify accomplishments (with percentages, numbers, and dollar amounts) as much as possible. Tell a story, if it’s relevant.
4. Speak Up.
Think of your LinkedIn executive profile as a large group gathering or technology meetup. Don’t just stand in a corner and watch — start a conversation (using LinkedIn Publishing or a post on your profile) or join an existing conversation (comment on other people’s posts or in a Group discussion).
POWER TIP: Aim to write at least 2-3 LinkedIn Publishing articles each year. “How-to” and analysis topics will likely get you the most engagement and visibility.
Phil Hurd is a Nationally Certified Resume Writer (NCRW), Nationally Certified Online Profile Expert (NCOPE), and Certified Professional Resume Writer (CPRW). He specializes in creating resumes, LinkedIn profiles, biographies, and cover letters for executives and individual contributors in all functions in technology-oriented industries. Phil also comes from a long background in technology recruiting and search.