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Twelve Changes You Can Make in About an Hour to Improve Your LinkedIn Profile

Twelve Changes You Can Make in About an Hour to Improve Your LinkedIn Profile

Generally, I write and speak about the importance of putting your essence – your purpose, principles, and business passions – into your LinkedIn profile, so people will discover the authentic YOU when they encounter your profile. That change requires heavy lifting: introspection by the individual and high quality writing (either by that person or someone like me who specializes in writing superlative customized LinkedIn profiles). But here, as my holiday gift to you, I offer 12 simple changes you can make to improve your profile from a mechanical standpoint. Each of these is easy to make and the references I provide can help. You may be able to make all these changes in about a hour, or if you are so inclined, you could do one a day during each of the 12 days of Christmas!

 

  1. Customize your profile’s URL
    Why? Because the URL assigned to you by LinkedIn ends with a long string of random numbers and letters that make it hard for you (and others) to memorize or type. Your default URL doesn’t fit nicely on a business card or your signature block on your email and it is cumbersome when you have to look it up to post it in the Zoom chat with the customized URLs of others. Also, using the default URL signals that you are not in the know. To the right of your profile, you’ll find Edit Public Profile and URL.
  2. Check to see that your photo and all your sections are visible to the public
    The longer you have been on LinkedIn, the more likely you are to have this kind of settings problems because we were all so skittish about showing our photo online years ago. Now, having your photo not show on your profile is equivalent to having no photo of a house listed for sale. I see the “no photo showing” problem quite often among senior-level leaders. Of course they are generally unaware that people who are not connected see their profile without their photo. There are other sections of your profile that may not be visible. To make them visible, you’ll find those in the in the Edit Public Profile and URL noted in #1.
  3. Change the setting “Viewers of This Profile Also Viewed” to NO
    Why? This default setting allows 10 people to appear to the right of your profile (or 20 in the phone app) who were viewed by someone who viewed your profile also. Recruiters sometimes refer to these people as your competition; recruiters are delighted to use this feature to help them source candidates for positions they are trying to fill. Giving others a free ride on your LinkedIn profile is not to your advantage. Change this setting to No. You’ll find this setting in a drop-down menu under your avatar (the small photo of you on your toolbar) in the Site Preferences section.
  4. Add your email address
    Actually, add it in two places: under the Contact info button and at the end of your About section. Why? Your connections expect to be able to access your email in your Contact info section, but people who are not connected with you cannot see your email under your Contact section.
  5. Check out the other info under the Contact info button
    For example, add your current company’s website if it is not already there and make sure that websites from former positions are not still linked with your account. Also, take a look at anything else you might want to add or subtract. For example, if you dislike having prospective vendors and people you don’t know well wish you a happy birthday, take your birth date off. If on your special day you crave attention, make sure your birthday is listed.
  6. Attempt to correct the issue of any missing logos in your Experience section and Education section
    Logos are an important credibility builder. For my instructions on how to get logos that exist within the LinkedIn database to show up, and how to get logos for a company you control to be entered in the LinkedIn database, see my article, A Small Omission That Undermines Your Credibility on LinkedIn.
  7. Add the Name pronouncer widget
    Is yours is a name that people find challenging to pronounce? If so, rejoice! Help is on the way. On the LinkedIn mobile app (only), you can now record your name so that people will know how to pronounce it. You’ll find instructions here. Once recorded via the mobile app, people can listen to your recording from any device.
  8. Add a Featured section
    Populate it with posts you’ve made about your team, articles you’ve written, logos of professional associations to which you belong, etc. Read more about the Featured section in my article Are You Missing Out On LinkedIn’s New Brand-Building Features?
  9. Make sure your education listings are in the order you prefer
    To make a change, go to your education section and you’ll see to the right of the word Education caret symbols (up and down) and a plus sign. Click on the carets which takes you to a “Reorder” window from which you can change the order of your schools using the slider icons.
  10. Check out the Optional sections such as licenses and certifications, honors and awards, volunteer experience. Add any that apply.
  11. Make sure that the top three skills that show on your profile are really your most important skills
    If they are not, demote the skills currently listed in the top three slots by clicking the pushpin icons and add the pushpin icons to your three most important skills.
  12. Customize your LinkedIn headline
    LinkedIn auto-fills your headline with your current job title and company, but you have 220 characters to customize it. Think of your headline as your marketing tagline and add some additional text. For example, you could add the value your clients or customers receive from your services.

 

If you are a C-suite executive or senior leader who would like to improve your LinkedIn profile and presence, I can make it easy for you. I have a track record of working effectively with C-suite executives and senior leaders to create LinkedIn profiles and other executive-branded materials that help them show up as authentically and powerfully online as they do in person. This way, they can attract the talent they want to hire, increase their visibility and influence, and control their career. I also mentor clients on LinkedIn etiquette and effective posting strategies to ensure their success. Let me help you use this essential business tool effectively. Contact me through my website: www.carolkaemmerer.com or profile: www.linkedin.com/in/carolkaemmerer. 

 

Carol KaemmererOther resources:

Book me to speak either virtually or in-person on the topic of personal branding via LinkedIn. I am a member of the National Speakers Association, a Certified Virtual Presenter, and an Advisor to the C-Suite Network.

Cover of LinkedIn for the Savvy Executive: Second Edition by Carol Kaemmerer

 

My NEW book Second Edition: LinkedIn for the Savvy Executive: Promote Your Brand with Authenticity, Tact and Power is available through online booksellers. For your author-inscribed and signed book or quantity discounts, order: https://carolkaemmerer.com/books

 

For DIY instruction on improving your LinkedIn profile, register for my self-paced, online course: How to be Found on LinkedIn: Key Strategies for Attracting Ideal-for-You Opportunities, https://carolkaemmerer.com/onlinecourse

 

To receive my monthly articles in your email inbox, sign up for my monthly emailing here.

 

Articles by Carol Kaemmerer

Why Is My LinkedIn Profile Getting So Few Views?

How Can LinkedIn Be Part of Your Company’s Strategy for Responding to the Great Resignation?

Is Your LinkedIn Profile Missing the Mark?

Comfortable in Your Job? Uncomfortable Life Lessons to Safeguard Your Career

How to Be Found on LinkedIn: Ten Top Strategies to Rank Well on a LinkedIn Keyword Search

Why Are You Playing Small on LinkedIn?

If You’re Not “Writing to the Margins” on LinkedIn, You’re Missing Out

Don’t Be Hooked Through a Big Phish: Recognize and Avoid Phishing Scams on LinkedIn

A Small Omission That Undermines Your Credibility on LinkedIn

Tell Me More…” — On LinkedIn

What is Your Poor LinkedIn Profile Costing You?

C-Suite Executives: Stop Hiding Online

 

Categories
Culture Entrepreneurship Personal Development Women In Business

How COVID is Changing the Fashion Industry

The pandemic taught us that we could live with a lot less. The overindulgence of items we surrounded ourselves with seemed frivolous and more like a form of gluttony from mindless purchasing. Many of our closets looked like a smorgasbord where we got our money’s worth from an all-you-can-eat buffet.   

 

We found ourselves cleaning out every nook and cranny we could find in our homes, including our often-overstuffed closets. Second-hand clothing stores had a tough time keeping up with the inundation of items coming into their stores. However, this robust inventory was a Godsend to those who felt financially crushed by the pandemic. The added stock was also the perfect storm for those who are ever so mindful of conserving resources and their role in social responsibility.    

   

Enter 2022. The office dress code is dead. Or dead in the way we once knew it.  

   

Gone are the days of having a work wardrobe and a casual wardrobe. The lines are now blurred. According to LinkedIn’s newsletter 29 Big Ideas That Will Change Our World in 2022, the 4-day workweek is ramping up. This shorter workweek gives us less time to wear our more formal business attire. The hybrid workplace is also here to stay.  

  

What we will see in 2022 will be multi-functional clothing—the demand for a practical, sustainable, and flexible wardrobe. The consumer will insist on attire that can take them from dropping off their kids at school, heading to the office – whether work-from-home or otherwise, lunch with a friend or business associate, back to work, running errands, or off to an event and back home. 

   

As such, fabric suppliers will see an increased demand for quality fabrics that are durable and comfortable, as noted on page 13 of The State of Fashion 2022 by The Business of Fashion and The McKinsey & Company. Capsule wardrobes, coined in the 1970s by Susie Faux and made popular by Donna Karan in 1985, will gain momentum as we embrace living the less is more lifestyle.  

 

In 2019 and 2020, we found ourselves looking for comfort, and we sought this through the fabrication of our clothing. The comfortable clothing we wore seemed to act as a soothing blanket in which we wrapped ourselves. While we were heading toward the casualization of wardrobe before the pandemic, what may surprise you is that many are ready for a restart. After living 9+ months in athleisure, many are craving something new. Liken it to nine months of wearing maternity clothes. There is joy in putting on regular clothing once again. The State of Fashion 2022 report found workwear such as blouses and suits now on the rise. Occasion dressing is also on the rise as we step back into attending events such as weddings, ceremonies, and galas.   

 

Businesses will need to weigh their dress codes’ effect on culture and brand. Some will adhere to the dress code of the past. According to the State of Fashion 2022 report, “… a growing number of consumers are likely to allocate more of their wallet share to investment pieces and versatile items, even as inexpensive items and impulse purchases remain an important part of the wardrobe mix for many in 2022.” Other businesses will embrace leniency in their dress code, entrusting their employees to make smart choices for their workday. There is never a one-size-fits-all.  

 

Sustainability will stay top of mind for both the consumer and fashion brands. Brands must find ways to ensure consumers’ items are environmentally safe and produced in ethical working conditions. Using technology such as QR codes on tags that allow the consumer to learn more about the sustainability of an item is already rising in popularity.   

 

Many people turned to thrift stores during the pandemic for financial reasons and explored rental clothing companies. I predict shopping thrift stores and renting clothing will gain significant market share.   

 

From Burberry to Banana Republic, fashion brands are racing to the rental market by creating subscription models. There is a significant opportunity for entrepreneurs in this market segment. For example, newcomer Preserve brings South Asian fashion to consumers through its rental model.   

 

People crave community and realize just how important it is to them now. We will see a return of boutique shops where locals will support the community that took care of them during the pandemic. Local shopping also offers a way to get items immediately. Small businesses will need to focus on creating experiences such as live video chats, in-store or online personal shopping, and same-day delivery and returns to and from your front door.   

 

Boutiques offer a sense of atypical clothing that consumers now crave. Like a butterfly coming out of a cocoon, we are rebirthing our wardrobes with fun and colorful items. A wardrobe that stimulates us and brings a sense of inspiration. As seen with the rise in awareness of Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion, self-expression is making its way to the forefront. We long for ways to express ourselves honestly. One way to do this is through our appearance.   

 

Shopping online will also continue to rise. With this, the demand for innovative technology experiences will come into play, such as virtual try-ons using AI.   

 

I predict 2022 will be the bridge year from traditional business wear and strict dress codes to multi-purpose attire that exudes individual expression. When we consider purchasing new clothing, we will ask ourselves three questions: is it sustainable, multi-functional, and expressive. Dressing to express will far outweigh dressing to impress. 

 

Want to your personal image or your company’s dress standards to meet the value of your brand, contact me at sheila@imagepowerplay.com or 605.310.7166 to schedule a 30-minute call to discuss how we can work together to grow your influence through my return on image® services. To learn more, visit: www.imagepowerplay.com.  

Categories
Growth Personal Development Women In Business

How the Dress Code Affects Your Bottom Line

I predict 2022 will be the bridge year from traditional business wear and strict dress codes to multi-purpose attire that exudes individual expression that impacts both corporate and personal brands. Dressing to express will far outweigh dressing to impress.

 

The office dress code died in 2016. But many organizations still hold firm onto the belief that for you to be seen as professional and for you to be productive, that it must be done in business attire. The pandemic proved that many people – although not everyone – can be just as productive, and maybe even more so, while working in sweats and athleisure.

 

I tell all my clients there are consequences to everything you do, say, and wear. Our overall appearance expresses how formal we are to how casual we are. It can portray bold, artistic, individualistic, nurturing, or even careless personas and even says something about our decision-making skills. Clothing also affects us internally. It affects our mood and our mindset. This will come through in how you interact with others that day and how you approach the tasks at hand. Clothing also affects your money. You could be leaving money on the table with how you are showing up.

 

Some people are very formal and traditional by nature. They feel better and are more productive in traditional business clothing. Some people are more casual and laid back. They feel better in looser silhouettes that are comfortable. They are more effective and at home in this type of clothing. If you put either group in the opposite’s clothing style, you will find they simply will not perform at their optimum level.

 

As mentioned, being productive in casual clothing didn’t hold true for everyone during the pandemic. I, for one, still dressed up every day. Doing so made me feel better. I found I was more productive. But who I am at my core is someone who enjoys expressing themselves through colorful and creative clothing. I enjoy dressing up. Understand that clothing is used by others as visual data to gain insights into who you are as a person, what type of company or industry we represent, and how we will approach the day’s tasks.

 

So, where does that leave us? Do we really need a dress code for our organization to be successful? Does a dress code limit productivity and throw functionality out the window? Human Resource professionals and CEOs are grappling to figure out what to do about a dress code to bring people back into the office. Dress codes used to be a way to create harmony in how an organization portrayed itself. Most often, though, organizations have dress codes just to have dress codes.

 

The organization’s human side is just as important as the data and financials. In fact, it is more important because that is what brings in business and who does the work. Investing in human capital will produce a more significant ROI than what you might expect. Productivity increases when people are given the flexibility to dress for the day. Culture is affected positively. Allowing employees the freedom to express themselves increases creativity.

 

As organizations look for ways to stand out in their industry, one of the top concerns is attracting and retaining talent. Your office dress code will undoubtedly be part of their decision, especially during the Great Resignation. Flexibility and freedom to express are top motivators.

 

Businesses will need to weigh their dress codes’ effect on culture and brand. Some will adhere to the dress code of the past at the risk of being seen as archaic. Other companies will embrace leniency in their dress code, entrusting their employees to make smart choices for their workday. The risk is losing authority. There is never a one-size-fits-all. An organization must ask itself when deciding on an office dress code whether what the employees wear strengthens or weakens the perception of the company’s brand; in turn, the same holds true for those individuals’ personal brands. Because in the end, I believe personal brands are a large part of what makes a solid corporate brand.

 

Want to your personal image or your company’s dress standards to meet the value of your brand, contact me at sheila@imagepowerplay.com or 605.310.7166 to schedule a 30-minute call to discuss how we can work together to grow your influence through my return on image® services. To learn more, visit: www.imagepowerplay.com

Categories
Growth Leadership Personal Development

Mentoring from our intrinsic selves in 2022

Who am I? This question is fueling the trends we are witnessing going into the new year. The underlying question is, how do we find the answer and more so, how do we help our kids avoid the pitfalls of an extrinsic society?

As we came out of 2020, we discovered how many people actually began doing intrinsic healing for themselves in search of the answer to this seemingly simple question. The business world was the first to see the results of this deep healing. You’ve heard of the “Great Resignation”, right? As people woke up to the fact they actually have choices in their lives, one of the first choices they made was cutting out what was contributing to their stress. That was quite the wake-up for employers and businesses worldwide.   

Now, as we roll into 2022, the focus on teens and young adults is growing. We discovered throughout the pandemic how much the young generations were actually struggling and how much we tended to blow off as just “typical” teenage behavior. As we uncover and rediscover who we are, reigniting our passions and adjusting our lives, we need to keep in mind that the younger generations are watching us. Not to criticize us or rebel against us, as it has been assumed they do. Teens watch and mimic us as they grow into adults. They look to us for guidance, and the guidance they look for is truly in our actions and daily behaviors. 

If you’re thinking, “Great. On top of navigating all this other stuff, now I need to worry about being watched by my teenager?”, there is no need to worry, my friend. Teens really just want to learn, be a part of something, and inviting them on your journey of self-exploration is one many of them are willing to take with you. 

As a highly trusted youth mentor, the level of trust that exists between myself and each teen I mentor was built on my willingness to be authentic, vulnerable, and non-judgemental. This has allowed for an environment of safety to develop. Every human being wants to feel safe, regardless of age. In return for creating an environment where they can safely practice being themselves, I also gain an environment where I am able to continually put into action being authentically me. This is a win-win situation.

I have found there are 5 ways to build a trusting, genuine relationship that allows both parties to grow and flourish:

 

  • Avoid trying to impress others
    • Knowledge, experience, and achievements are great, however, who we know, how much we make, and what awards we have really aren’t as impressive to those around us as we’d like to believe. More times than not, others want to know how we handled ourselves when it wasn’t all rosy and ideal.

 

  • Keep agreements 
    • This is a real trust builder. Making promises we don’t keep teaches others they don’t need to keep promises either and it is hard to trust someone you can’t depend on. 

 

  • Be vulnerable
    • This takes courage. Admit failures, wrong decisions, and setbacks. Everyone knows humans aren’t perfect. Big lessons can be learned when we share our struggles along with what success came from those struggles. 

 

  • Listen without judgement
    • Genuinely listen and allow others an opportunity to talk through their own struggles, more times than not, the answer will be discovered without ever having to say anything. We don’t always need to provide the answer, just the space for the answer to be discovered. 

 

  • Walk the talk
    • It is easy to tell others what to do, it is much more challenging to lead by example. When those around us see us doing what we are saying, we build even more trust, reliability, and credibility. 

 

Even if you aren’t mentoring young adults, as we implement these into our lives, everyone we come in contact with will benefit. It just takes one person to have the courage to be brave, and to put these into practice. As we all work to create change, let’s make sure we are starting with ourselves in 2022 and be the change in the world. We never know who is watching.

Categories
Best Practices Body Language Culture Health and Wellness Human Resources Management Skills Women In Business

Important and Urgent

Right before the pandemic hit, I was speaking to a highly-regarded CEO about how I help business leaders up-level their game as it pertains to stress management. She was intrigued, but ultimately said, “You know, what you do is important, but not urgent (referring to the Eisenhower Matrix, a simple decision-making tool that helps you prioritize tasks).”

Almost two years to the day, managing stress and the consequences of not managing it well, have finally captured our attention. Mental health, wellness, work-life balance, burnout, depression, anxiety, and sadly suicide have become all too common in our everyday lives. Here in the US, we’ve plummeted down the world rankings for happiness.

But what does that mean for employers in the coming year? If you haven’t heard the term “The Great Resignation,” it’s important you do.

According to the Harvard Business Review, more than 9 million global employees quit their jobs in July 2021. And of them, the largest share went to the 30-to-45-year-old bracket. Unsurprising as this average age of new managers, carrying a large amount of stress and usually the least equipped to deal with it.

There are many complicating reasons for this exodus, but according to the study: “many of these workers may have simply reached a breaking point after months and months of high workloads, hiring freezes, and other pressures, causing them to rethink their work and life goals(https://hbr.org/2021/09/who-is-driving-the-great-resignation).”

In my 38 years as a mental health professional, my most engaged clients have been those between the ages of 30 and 45. They’ve lived past their 20’s when they thought they knew everything. And haven’t yet reached their 50’s where again, they will think they know everything.

It’s a time of growth when the existential meaning of life is most compelling. This generation, in particular, is hungry to learn, purpose-driven, and doesn’t want to wait until retirement to start enjoying what the world has to offer.

Given that we are living in unprecedented times, we must all pay attention to the underlying forces at play and the real costs of ignoring them. These issues are complicated and not easy to solve. Yet, if we don’t address them, our continued spiral towards an unhappy society will rage on.

To be very specific, when stress hormones flood the body and the brain, a person’s executive functioning goes “offline.” The desire may be there, but the capacity is not. Much has been said and written about focusing on the “whole person.” But what does that look like from an employer’s perspective?

1. Good mental health is not intuitive – it’s learned. Stress relief apps, office yoga, massage gift cards, etc. They are helpful, but not sufficient in building the kind of internal resiliency needed to cope with our current stressors. Picture bringing a plastic fork to a gunfight. Management teams need real skills and proven methods for managing staff happiness.

2. Peak Performance is predictable and repeatable. Again, one needs to understand how both the body and mind work to achieve these highly productive states. To achieve a sustainable workflow while operating in high-stress environments, one needs to be properly equipped.

3. Mind, Body, Spirit, and Emotion. These four pillars comprise a whole system and thus, a whole person. Pay attention to them and your team will notice. I can’t guarantee these methods will make you their favorite boss, but I can guarantee that you will be setting them up for success both inside your organization and for life.

The last few years have provided us with great challenges and even greater opportunities. It would be a shame to let this time of introspection pass by without making genuine change for the better. When the calendar rolls around to 2022, do you want to find yourself repeating negative thought patterns? Neither does your team.

Categories
Growth Health and Wellness Leadership

The Great Realization: All Sleep Is NOT Created Equally

THE GREAT REALIZATION

Forget The Great Resignation. Forget The Great Reshuffle. This year, focus on The Great Realization—your key to consistent high performance in how you live, love, and lead. 

What is The Great Realization of 2022? 

All sleep is NOT created equally. 

This has been proven repeatedly. Technology has demonstrated that you can get “enough” sleep and still have sleep performance problems. In fact, 50% of men and 25% of women get low-performance sleep.1

And while you can seek out state-of-the-art technology to measure your sleep performance, we have a far more reliable indicator hidden in plain sight:  our daytime performance.

When it comes to daytime performance, the most important KPI is this:

Do you maintain consistent energy throughout the day?

For far too many in our modern world, the answer is a resounding no.

Instead of maintaining consistent energy, they compensate for energy dips during the day. Compensations such as:

  • making daily pilgrimages to the altar of Keurig in search of caffeine-filled, performance-enhancing mugs;
  • ducking into quiet conference rooms for power naps and vowing to move to a company that has nap pods—if not the Silicon Valley companies, then Proctor & Gamble or even PricewaterhouseCoopers; and
  • prioritizing, above all else, the daily exercise routine—and believing that training for that Tough Mudder is just about the team building.

There are two problems with these compensations:

  1. The first problem lies in what they represent: energy dips where our performance slips–and we live, love, and lead at a level lower than our optimum. We can easily see this played out with our smartphones.  When we remember to put the phone on the charger overnight, we start the day with a fully charged battery. That gives us consistent access to the full capacity of the phone. But when do we forget to charge it? Soon that phone is in low power mode—the capacity is there, but it’s just not available.
  2. The second and larger problem with these compensations is this: we’ve come to accept the need for caffeine, naps, and adrenaline as a normal part of modern life.

As a result, we do not recognize the signs of low-performance sleep, and therefore, we do not realize there are solutions.

And the costs are huge.

In the short term, it’s the cost of lost opportunities because of presenteeism related to things like chronic sinus infections, IBS, and even anxiety. 

In the long term, it’s the erosion of our overall functioning. Low-performance sleep is implicated in Alzheimer’s Disease. And that’s only if other known comorbidities like cardiovascular disease, certain cancers, and type 2 diabetes don’t curtail your performance first. 

Unavoidably, those costs impact the bottom line:

  • decreased productivity
  • increased workplace accidents
  • higher health care costs
  • retention problems that dry up the leadership pipeline

So what can you do? Follow these simple steps:

  1. Realize that all sleep is not created equally. Sleep performance is not a numbers game. Get the recommended 8 hours, and watch for daytime signs of low sleep performance.
  2. Realize energy dips are a sign of low-performance sleep. Caffeine, naps, and adrenaline are compensations for low sleep performance.
  3. Realize you can achieve High-Performance Sleep™ for consistently high performance in how you live, love and lead. It starts with determining your sleep performance profile. Take the Sleep Performance Assessment.

Begin 2022 by honoring The Great Realization: All sleep is NOT created equally. When you do acquire the key to consistent high performance in how you live, love, and lead.

Take the Sleep Performance Assessment.

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1 https://www.researchgate.net/publication/272296734_Prevalence_of_sleep-disordered_breathing_in_the_general_population_THE_HypnoLaus_study

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