The online professional network LinkedIn revealed that words used in profiles like “excellent” and “successful” among several others were overused and tend to drive away recruiters.
The ‘buzzwords’ were drawn from analysis of millions of profiles worldwide to compile the ten most used words in the past twelve months. LinkedIn advises ambitious professionals to avoid these buzzwords when they are applying for jobs if they want to get noticed.
The top 10 buzzwords among profiles in Saudi Arabia:
However, Simple changes to one’s profile can bring a lot in return.
LinkedIn has partnered with author Christopher Sandford, a bestselling biographer who is well accustomed to articulating others’ achievements.
“The language we use says a lot about us so it’s important to choose your words carefully, especially in a professional context. Too often we hide behind buzzwords which don’t mean anything, whether out of a desire to keep things simple, or because we don’t feel confident talking about our work accomplishments,” says Sandford. “With some relatively simple changes you can start to use language which truly conveys what makes you great.”
Sandford’s tips to improve your LinkedIn profile:
1. Mind your language
Your profile summary is one of the first things people look at, so it’s important to get it right. You want the reader to want to know more about you, so start with something punchy. You can do this through specific phrases, storytelling or even clever use of punctuation. Don’t be afraid to lead with a short sentence, such as ‘Music is my first love.’ Above all, you should always keep your reader, or customer, firmly in mind.
2. Be direct
It’s often tempting to speak in the third person when it comes to our working lives – don’t! It’s impersonal and won’t draw the reader in. Take a professional tone and be assertive and direct when you’re talking about your achievements, don’t hide behind buzzwords or jargon. At the same time, don’t shy away from adding some personality to your language – this is a great way to show your character.
3. Make the most of your experience
List out all your relevant previous roles and describe what you did in everyday language. This will help people understand the breadth of your ‘work story’ – a complete profile reflects a well-rounded person.
4. Show, don’t just tell
While language is important, so is showing real examples of your work. Instead of using buzzwords like ‘strategic’, prove it by uploading presentations or projects that bring this to life. These are individual to you and help paint the picture of your special skills and unique background – whether that’s an image from a launch of a big campaign or the blog you write in your spare time.
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