7 Deadly Linkedin Sins


This is a follow-up post to the “Seven Deadly Twitter Sins” and “Seven Deadly Facebook Sins” post. After seeing the overwhelming response to this post, I decided to turn this into a weekly series. This week’s series post is all about what not to do on Linkedin.

Contrary to many people’s beliefs, social media will amplify your reputation. Here are seven things that will make you look like a self-obsessed tool on Linkedin.

7. No Work Experience/Job Descriptions

Linkedin is a social network for professionals. It’s usually the first place a recruiter and/or hiring manager will go when they are looking for candidates. If you don’t have anything filled out, then you are doing yourself a very big disservice.

6. Syncing All Your Tweets on Linkedin

This is a personal pet peeve of mine. Twitter and Linkedin are separate social networks. On Linkedin, it’s customary to change your status update anywhere from once a day to once a week. A Twitter enthusiast, like myself, tweets way more than once a week. This inundates all your connections’ news feeds. In the case of a Twitter chat, no one on Linkedin wants to read 20-100 tweets in one hour from one person.

5. Inappropriate Profile Photo

A profile photo can work in your advantage on Linkedin. A semi-professional headshot is the standard. But, if your photo is of you drinking a beer or wearing questionable attire, it’s better not to have one at all. That profile photo may be the first impression of you that a potential client or boss will have. Do you really want that first impression to be of you half-dressed chugging a beer? Hopefully, not.

4. No Recommendations

Argurably, one of Linkedin’s greatest features is the ability to have recommendations on your profile. Having your past and present coworkers, bosses and clients vouch for you in a recommendation adds a ton of credibility. Anyone can write a stellar Linkedin profile, but that means little if no one thinks you are the perfect employee that you say you are. Strive to have at least five recommendations on your profile.

3. Neglecting Linkedin’s Groups Feature

Linkedin Groups is another horribly under-utilized feature. There are groups for just about any professional and alumni association. All the groups have a discussion board, and many of them even have job boards. Start networking and talking here. It can be overwhelming to join and participate in a ton all at once, so start small. I’d recommend starting with your alumni association group. I know mine, the Mizzou Mafia Journalism School Group, is full of eager alumni willing to answer questions, great discussions and a pretty neat job board (if you are looking for work).

2.  No Detail Is Too Small and/or The Chronic Over-Exaggerator

Both of these type of Linkedin connectors are equally bad. I’ll start with the extremely detailed type. Details are great, in moderation. It’s great to include that you are the top salesman and sold millions of dollars worth of products at your company. Or, that you found a cure for a disease. But, other details, like you were voted best coffee maker at your office, should be left off .

Another equally bad trait is the over-exaggerator. I’ve touched on this in my two previous series post, but it’s worth repeating because there are so many people still doing this. Inflating job titles, over-exaggerating your work on a project and generally embellishing your professional credentials are forms of lies. Lying is bad, and the truth will come out at some point.

1. I’m an “Expert” But I’m Really Just Looking To Shamelessly Self-Promote

The Linkedin Experts are usually found in the Q&A section. They are usually the ones, who answer every single question. All their answers sound remotely similar. That’s usually because the answer is crafted around their product, service, or website. People are smart enough to figure this one out, so it’s best to answer questions with valuable content instead of the snake-oiled sales pitch answer.

Do you want more tips on the social media and email dos and don’ts. Sign up for my free monthly email newsletter here: Social Media: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly. No spam guaranteed!

About the author

Jessica Malnik

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