Here on the ResLife blog, we are no stranger to tackling the topic of internships – from Internship 101, Ways To Ace Your Internship, to Finding Your Outfit For Interviews. With internship season looming this summer, we’ve come in with yet another timely reminder: Up your LinkedIn game. Actively gaining connections, providing insightful updates and building your own personal brand can go a long way in helping to boost your career. But first things first, do you know how make a good profile to stand out on LinkedIn? Well, stick around to find out as we spill industry tips on maximising your LinkedIn.
1. Start off Well with A Good Profile Picture
First and foremost, one of the most overlooked parts of a LinkedIn profile, but arguably one of the most important is your profile picture. Lending a first impression, you want your image to give off a professional, yet approachable vibe. This warrants a clean, plain background, with your face taking up 60% of the frame. And remember to smile, of course!
2. Your Profile, Your Story
Secondly, write a compelling summary. A good summary should sell your story and allow you to stand out against your peers. However, given that most of us undergraduates may not have had much work experience, this is typically a tough one for many. But no need to fret! For us students, we can take a different, more personal approach. You can write about your interests, your motivations and what you are passionate about. It doesn’t need to be fancy; just let them know who you are, and what drives you.
If you’re scrolling through LinkedIn (or stalking), you may find that some profile summaries may be more creative than others. This highly depends on the industry that you want to work in. For example, more creative industries like writing or fashion tend to favour profiles that show off your unique personality. So take note of what kind of work you want to be doing, and cater your writing style to best suit the needs of your employer.
Pro-tip: If you have plans to work overseas, you can also make a LinkedIn account in the countries’ language. Here is an article to refer to.
3. Your Experiences Lend Value
Probably the easiest section to fill: your experiences and academic portfolio. This one should be a breeze as you can just plonk in whatever you would normally write in your resume.
However, although this part may seem relatively straightforward, there are things that should be taken note of. Keep your sentences succinct and write only what value-adds to your profile. Stay clear of simply describing your job scope, and make sure to use active verbs to increase your presence. If you are unsure, you can always book a consultation with the NUS Centre for Future-ready Graduates, to seek a professional’s opinion.
Furthermore, the featured section can be a good way to show off your gained experiences in a dynamic, visual way. There, you should attach some of your prominent works, certificates, or anything you deem to be most important.
4. Gain Connections
In gaining connections, you can start by first following your peers that you have met through school, activities or work. This would allow you to keep up in touch with your friend’s professional lives, which may, in turn, generate new job opportunities.
To expand your reach, you should also follow influencers in your professional sphere and your top 5 workplace aspirations. Getting in on groups that are relevant to your career can also help you gain new connections. You can also follow seniors working in organisations that you may want to work for, and then follow the companies hiring manager, if possible.
However, do note that you should not follow random people just to boost your connections count. These connections will not only dilute your reach but also may also bring up concerns of safety. Only connect with people you know and trust and those relevant to your professional careers.
5. Share Updates, Follow Influencers and Post Often
Lastly, to gain a presence on LinkedIn or meet more like-minded individuals, post updates and share your authentic voice. This is where recruiters can see what kind of professional content you are interested in, your professional values and get in on the projects you are currently working on. Some examples of the things you can post are updates and learnings from your internships and sharing your comments on market leader’s posts. Remember to post frequently and consistently, once or twice a week.
Internships are not only working experiences but ultimately, life experiences as well. So when you embark on your next internship, make the most out of it and learn as much as you can – and have fun while you’re at it! All the best in securing your summer internships. Catch you again on the Reslife Blog for our next article!