I’m currently coaching an executive to refine her leadership skills and a position opened up in her company that's the perfect role for her. It would advance her career, and she’s very excited about the opportunity.
We began discussing a strategy to position herself as the ideal candidate for this role, when she realized her resume was seven years old and she hadn’t looked at her LinkedIn profile in five years.
It took several sessions working together along with a number of hours on her own to bring these documents up-to-date and capture all her achievements over the past seven years.
It’s critical to keep your resume and LinkedIn profile updated, so you can strike quickly on a new posting.
The first thing a hiring manager does when you apply for a job is review both your resume and LinkedIn profile. You shouldn’t apply for the position until you’ve updated them. If you have a lot of work to do, like my client did, you may miss out on a great opportunity.
And there are specific reasons for keeping your LinkedIn profile up-to-date: recruiters and hiring managers regularly look at profiles to fill positions, whether the position is posted or not. If your profile doesn’t reflect your qualifications, you could lose out on a great opportunity. Also, when people connect with you, they see your profile. And you want to make sure it's current because your new connection could lead you to your next job or a business opportunity.
Here are four sections to keep up-to-date on your LinkedIn profile:
· LinkedIn profile photo: Have a professional head shot taken and if your photo is five years old, it’s time to get a new one.
· Headline: The headline is underneath your name and is one of the most important parts of your profile. Your goal is to make it stand out by using a combination of descriptors such as: where you work, your title, your expertise, and/or keywords that others use when looking for your services.
· Contacts: Be sure to connect with everyone in your network. When you meet someone new in a professional capacity, connect with them on LinkedIn and be sure to write a brief, personal message with your invitation to connect.
· Recommendations: Reach out to clients, other partners and vendors you’ve worked with and ask for recommendations. If appropriate, offer to give others recommendations.
Here are two things to update on your resume:
· Work experience: Include your current and past positions, with descriptions of your roles, successes, and achievements. Where possible, include measurements to show the impact of your work. Focus on your accomplishments not tasks!
· Awards and certifications: Be sure to include these as they help you stand out and make you memorable.
If you need help updating your resume or LinkedIn profile, please contact me to discuss... don't let a great career opportunity pass you by!