Chances are when writing a LinkedIn profile, you're carefully selecting words to help you stand out as the best candidate for future job opportunities.
But according to the site, word choice isn't as straightforward as it seems.
LinkedIn has released a list of the top ten most overused "buzzwords", with 'specialized' coming in at number one.
The top ten buzzwords for 2017 are:
Disappointed? Yeah, us too. It seems like we could all use a thesaurus at the very least.
LinkedIn spokesperson Shiva Kumar says workers don't realize they're "diluting their professional brand" by including these overused words.
Mr. Kumar says it's important to use examples of your work, instead of tired cliches, to make your profile more authentic.
Once you've made it past the application phase, you want to nail the interview. To find out how, listen to the Mamamia Out Loud team interview Mamamia's HR advisor. (Post continues below)
So saying "I'm focused" isn't helpful—unless you're telling potential employers what you've been focused on lately and how that focus produced tangible results.
"LinkedIn data shows you only have five to ten seconds to impress a potential employer online, so it’s important to stand out from the rest of crowd," Mr. Kumar says.
In an effort to help you do just that, LinkedIn asked award-winning biographer Christopher Sandford, who makes a living out promoting others' achievements, to share his tips.
1. Make your words count.
Sandford advises you start with something "punchy" in your profile summary.
"Don’t be afraid to lead with a short sentence, such as 'Music is my first love'," he suggests.
2. Be direct.
Guilty of referring to yourself in the third person? Apparently, it's not giving off the professional vibe you're going for.
"It's impersonal and won’t draw the reader in. Don’t shy away from adding some personality to your language—this is a great way to show your character," Sandford says.
3. Showcase your experience.
That internship you did in college? Include it. Your first job as a receptionist? Include it.
"Your LinkedIn profile is 12 times more likely to be viewed if you have more than one previous position listed," Sandford says.
He suggests highlighting what you achieved in each of your relevant previous roles while listing them.
4. Show, don't just tell.
A great way to let potential employers know about your achievements is to show them off, Sandford says.
"Paint the picture with visuals—whether that’s a video of you speaking at a conference, a research paper you authored, a news article that features you, or an image from a launch of a big campaign."
So there you go: remove those buzzwords, inject some personality into your profile and get achievement-focused—just maybe don't describe yourself that way.
This post originally appeared on Mamamia, Spring.St's Australian sister site. You can read it here.
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