LinkedIn, the social network of the job seeker and the career advancer, offers opportunities to display your experience and skills in a way that is sure to impress future employers. On the other hand, it’s also a good way to show that corporate-speak has completely hijacked your vocabulary.
It’s not LinkedIn’s fault; after all, the site’s purpose is to allow you to build a sort of resume on steroids. It’s no wonder, then, that the same problems that bedevil resumes crop up on LinkedIn profiles.
What’s the biggest problem in resumes or profiles that take the place of resumes? Not communicating effectively. This takes many forms, of course, from formatting poorly to neglecting to correct typos to failing to use action words to describe what you’ve done at previous jobs. Cramming in as many meaningless buzzwords as possible is just another way to confuse the issue.
What should you do instead? LinkedIn suggests that you:
Consider the opposite: Would you ever call yourself irresponsible or impatient? One of the quickest ways of deciding whether or not to select a word that may describe your professional brand is to consider the antonym. In the case of “effective,” its opposite is “ineffective,” making “effective” one of those descriptors that is a given. Your entire profile can show that you are responsible and effective without having to include the overused words.
Jen Hubley Luckwaldt writes about work-life balance, stress management, and other topics relating to what makes us happy at work. A full-time freelancer, she deals with stress by blurring the lines between life and work to the point where the two spheres are barely separate. The happiest day of her career was when scientists proved that looking at pictures of cute animals makes us more productive.