There are five levels of strength of a LinkedIn profile. These are (1) Beginner, (2) Intermediate, (3) Advanced, (4) Expert and the one we're working to achieve is the (5) "All-Star" profile strength. To achieving the All-Star level is what everyone strives to achieve and many will hit the expert level and miss the All-Star because they don't know what it takes to achieve this level. Below we will cover what it takes to become an All-Star so that you can become one yourself.
The first item to cover as an All-star is that the circle doesn't fill 100%. We feel that this isn't 100% full as, like a website, your profile should never be considered complete. You should be constantly improving yourself to be better.
To achieve the All-Star status you need to achieve the following items which we will also cover in complete detail below. We don't cover the other four as if you're at those levels we believe that your ultimate goal is to reach All-Star. By knowing what is required to be an All-Star you can set your goal to achieve that. As you progress through LinkedIn you will reach the other four stages. Some you may even skip as you fill out the information that we outline below.
- Industry & Location
- Profile Summary
- Experience (minimum 3 jobs)
- 5+ Skills
- 50+ Connections
Your profile photo helps define who you are visually as a person. Your profile picture can convey a lot of information. They say a picture is worth a thousand words and is true in getting the point across of how you wish your profile seen by others. You want to be serious, but not overly serious. You want your picture to bring out your character of who you are and what you stand for as a person. You also, and most importantly, you want to make certain your profile picture is not a selfie, that it is "appropriate" (this isn't Facebook!), and makes people want to view the rest of your profile.
Having a headline that provides a value statement for people is crucial. People are more likely to view a profile where the image and the headline "speaks to them". Utilize keywords and phrases you feel will bring people into your world so that you can sell yourself to them as that's what your profile is all about.
Industry & Location
Our industry defines what we are either currently working in, have worked in or want to work in. Choose the industry that not only fits your position. If you are currently unemployed this could be a time to change your industry to one that you would like to be in. Headhunters will search and could find you if you choose the industry they are looking at.
Your location is truly a simple choice right? If you live in say Valparaiso, Indiana then that's your only choice correct? Not necessarily as if you are like I am you also get the option of Chicagoland area that you can choose from as I am near a large metropolitan area. If you are close enough to work in an area that allows multiple choices and you do want to commute then choose the place you want to be found in.
Here's where you truly get to shine. Unlike all of the other areas this is a true free form section that you get to define who you are. You've gotten people interested enough that they now want to read and learn more about who you are. Make this a truly value proposition selling yourself.
We all know that for many of us it's hard to write about ourselves. One item I know I've done is I work with people that know me professionally and assist in covering what I have done and do. This allows not only the perspectives of others but also a way of making certain you've covered all the best attributes that you need to cover about yourself.
Experience (minimum 3 jobs)
Many may be on their first job and may not have three or more jobs to place to achieve the All-Star status. Even people that start and end at one company can still achieve All-Star status. When you fill in your experience if you change departments or jobs at the company you can also update your experience to cover the new position you are working in. By doing this you can become an All-Star. Ideally you will have jobs at three separate companies. We would never encourage any sort of false or fabrication of information here. Be truthful even if you don't reach All-Star status. Don't just quit a job to get to three as it's better to reach the All-Star status by being awesome rather than a person jumping from job to job!
Everyone has some type of education. This can be High School (which we've all attended, a local community college, local university, online school, trade schools, seminars, webinars, etc. List all of your educational opportunities here.
Listing your skills is one of the easiest items you can do. If you are a woodworker list the skills you have doing woodworking. If you're a brain surgeon list the expertise you have in doing that. Once you have your skills listed work on getting your connections to endorse those skills to help build up your credibility.
Fifty seems like a high number to achieve and for someone just starting their career out that is a high number. You will be amazed how fast you reach fifty and surpass that number.
We all can achieve All-Star status given enough experience and time. As you continue to grow as a professional keep your information up-to-date and in no time you will become an All-Star player on the LinkedIn social media network. You may be wonder what about your volunteer experiences, the causes you are concerned about, recommendations, etc. These are also critical components that you should complete and fill out. Although today the list above is the necessary minimum to achieve an All-Star status doesn't mean tomorrow the same list will be true. Complete as much information so that your profile clearly define who you are and how you wish to be perceived within LinkedIn.
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