Category: Job Search

One Question You Should Ask Before Writing Your Résumé

Dear Amy,

I hate my new job. I worked at my old company for 12 years but was let go in a major restructuring. I found a new job, and I’ve been here for four months, but I hate it, and I’m going to quit.

My question is: Should I include this job on my résumé?

— Wondering

Should I include a short job on my résumé?

This is a common question — but there is no simple answer. As with many job search-related issues, the answer is: it depends.

The first thing to consider when deciding whether to include a short-term position on your résumé is whether it was planned as a short-term position, or if it simply ended up that way.

If the job was a contract (or a contract-to-hire role that did not get picked up), the usual answer is: Yes, include the job on your résumé. Make sure to describe it as such: “Hired for temporary, three-month role during family leave of key staffer” or “Contract-to-hire position ended prematurely due to termination of company relationship with client.”

Hiring managers are often sympathetic to short-term engagements when the circumstances are explained.

If the position was not meant to be short-term, it may be wise to find a way to make it seem like it was not as short. You could include it on the résumé but list your experience by year, instead of month/year to month/year.

For example, list the experience as Bumblebee Incorporated (2019) vs. Bumblebee Incorporated (March 2019 – August 2019).

Also consider whether you can “group” the role with other positions. For example, if you had several short-term roles — even if they were not technically temporary jobs — think about whether you can combine them into a single description.

For example, if you had a sales role with company ABC for eight months but left for a better opportunity with company XYZ — but only worked there for a year — consider listing the positions jointly as “Sales Representative, ABC/XYZ” with the inclusive dates. This only works, however, if the titles and work responsibilities are very similar.

If the job was not intended to be short-term — but ended up that way because you were fired, or you quit because you did not like the job/company/people, consider leaving it off. But even in this situation, there are exceptions.

For example, did you learn any new skills in this role, or use any skills that are not described elsewhere on your résumé? If so, you may want to include the position so that you can highlight those skills.

Both hard skills and soft skills matter…make sure to mention any new skills learned that are sought after by your job target companies

Did you work for a name-brand company (for example, a well-known startup or Fortune 500 company) or did you work with a name-brand client in the scope of your work in that role? You may want to include the position on the résumé to increase the search engine optimization (SEO) of the résumé for applicant tracking systems — or simply to impress a hiring manager.

Will having this position on your résumé help position you for a career change? Even if your time in the position was not long, if having that experience on there helps you bridge the transition from one career to the next, consider including it.

Finally, is this role your only work experience relevant to your job target? For example, if you are a recent graduate but were “first in and first out” at your first job, consider including it if you were on the job more than 90 days. (Often the most recent person hired is the first person let go, and most hiring managers recognize this.) Having some experience — even short-term experience — is better than having no experience.

And remember, if you were laid off because of the economy, loss of a key company customer, or another reason unrelated to your performance, include that in the résumé (and possibly also the cover letter).

If, on the other hand, the role does not fit in the narrative of where you’ve been in your career — and, more importantly, where you’re going — consider omitting it. Sometimes you take a job because you think it will open doors or lead you to a new path, and it does not end up that way. If including the job on the résumé will raise more questions than it will answer, consider not mentioning it on the résumé. Especially if omitting it would not cause a significant time gap on the résumé.

For example, Ted left the military after a career in naval intelligence and took a job at a startup software company, working in their security department. After being on the job for a few weeks, he decided that the laid-back company culture was not suited to his personality and he left the role. Instead, he went to work for a defense contractor, and has been there for two years and has now decided to look for a new job. Ted may choose to omit the position at the startup from his résumé.

Remember, your résumé is not an obituary that lists every job you have ever held. Instead, it’s a marketing document whose content should support the job target you’re seeking.

Consequently, you may choose to only include the most recent 10-15 years of work experience on your resume. Not only can this help reduce the likelihood of age discrimination, but in a world where things change at a rapid pace, your older experience may no longer be relevant. You likely have newer skills, experience, and projects that better reflect where you are going, not where you have been.

However, you should not leave a job off your résumé that you held for any significant length of time (say, more than six months) just because you were fired (even for performance) because you do not want to talk about it. Instead, be prepared to address the reason for your departure (including taking responsibility for shortcomings in your performance) and being able to describe how you took corrective action to ensure the situation does not happen again.

For example, if you are sales professional who was let go because you missed two consecutive quarters of sales quotas, you might include the role on your résumé (especially if you were selling a desirable product or working with high-profile clients) but be ready to explain that you didn’t have the depth of product knowledge that you should have had in order to be successful in that position. This is a particularly effective strategy if you have been successful in previous sales roles, but just not in this one.

One important thing to note: If you are asked to complete a job application that requires you to list all positions you’ve held (read the application directions carefully!), you should include each and every role — no matter how short — particularly if you’re required to sign the application (and, therefore, attest to the truthfulness of the information included).

But on the résumé, you can decide which positions to include and exclude, and even how they are arranged.

Determining what to include — and what to exclude — on your résumé to maximize your chances of getting an interview is one of the important functions a professional résumé writer can assist you with. Having the guidance and experience of a professional to help you navigate your job search can save you time and money, landing you that dream job faster, and potentially even at a higher salary than you were expecting. Keep the easy to follow chart below handy when re-writing your résumé for that new job, so you can make the best decision about including all of your past job roles.

Need our help writing your résumé or LinkedIn profile just call/text us at 201-667-2994 or tell us about your job search needs at this link https://JobSearchSuperhero.com/contact-form

Does a Cover Letter Still Matter? (Template Included)

When I was applying for jobs in the 1980 and 1990s, having an appropriate introductory cover letter was not only expected, but also practically mandatory to submit along with my resume. The cover letter was the golden key to open the door to at least getting an interview with HR. It set the tone for what is to come. Hiring managers were all about the cover letter back then.

Fast forward to the days of the digital job search market. Should you include a cover letter with a résumé? That all depends.

To cover letter or not?

Why write a cover letter?

Nowadays, résumé writers write a cover letter that is fit to a specific job and its qualifications. Known as a “personalized cover letter,” this introduction tells recruiters that you are uniquely qualified for the advertised position. You have the qualities they are looking for.

The Cover Letter Structure

When perusing a job ad, you must have a connection that compels you to want to apply. The key here is to do your homework. Research as much as you can about that company so you can show how your philosophy aligns with theirs. There is a saying that “people understand the intellect but connect emotionally. The heart will always rule over the head.” Therefore, the cover letter must capture the reader’s emotional attention. How do you do this?

Make this job personal. We had a client who came from another country and wanted to change careers. As a plant manager, she decided she had a passion for real estate. We researched the company she wanted to work for, wrote her story, aligning it with the CEO’s story and goals, and addressing each of the job requirements. She got the job in about two weeks! See the cover letter sample template below and some headings that you can use in your cover letter.

1.    Problems I Fix

2.    Areas I Excel In

3.    What I am Passionate About

4.    How I Contribute to Team Goals

5.    My Proudest Moments

You get the idea.

(Image credit hloom.com)

See the sample template below to help to write your own compelling, personalized cover letter.

=============================

JANE DOE

Hollywood, CA 10000 | 555-555-5555 | jdoe123@email.com

November 11, 2015

General Hospital

12345 Hollywood Road

Hollywood, CA 10000

Career Opportunity: E.R. Information Receptionist (Hollywood) ─ Department 56789 ─ Req. #ER56789

Dear Hiring Manager:

WHY GENERAL HOSPITAL?

When I read your “Life at General Hospital” mission statement on your website, I quickly connected to your core values, including “collaborative…a place that values diversity…devoted to compassionate and comprehensive care for patients.” Your open position for an ER information receptionist aligns perfectly with my goal of working in a supporting role in a hospital environment.

I’M PREPARED FOR THE POSITION

My 6 years serving as a police department desk clerk with the New York City Police Department has given me the skills, experience, and knowledge necessary to add value and excellence to your E.R. team. I believe that quality care at any hospital is a team effort and that everyone the patient or their family encounters needs to have the same passion and goal of delivering a quality care experience.

What Your
Needs Are
What I Bring to the
Table
Interpersonal
skills to
effectively
communicate &
collaborate.  
Experience handling a
busy information desk in one of the busiest
precincts in Manhattan.  
Treats
co-workers,
patients,
and families with dignity &
respect.
Promotes an
environment
sensitive to
cultural
diversity.
As an NYC Information Desk Clerk,
these are core values that I adhere to,
and strongly believe in. I communicated
with the public and maintained a calm
and professional demeanor with highly
diverse communities.  
Ability to
set
priorities,
solve
problems,
use
proper
judgment
in difficult
situations
and be
flexible.  
I can re-prioritize on a
dime, using my
judgment in high
pressure situations to
solve and address
problems.

I am excited at the possibility of becoming a part of your team. Please call (111)-870-8758 for an interview.

Respectfully,

Jane Doe

Jane Doe

Encl: Resume

========================

When writing your cover letter simply follow the list of job requirements that you have copied and pasted from the job advertisement. I suggest that you address at least 6 to 8 points in the right column filling in your career story and skills. If you are uncertain if your cover letter made it through the ATS to a human, then you can even send it by snail mail along with a handwritten stickie (brief explanation or thank you for taking the time to read note).

The answer is to treat each situation separately and creatively for each client’s situation. We analyze each company’s size and culture, check to see if you are connected to anyone that could introduce you. Alternatively, perhaps they know a decision-maker that can pass along pass along your résumé. We believe that the cover letter can still work to set a candidate apart if used correctly in the right situation. If uploading to a website to apply, a good clue if the company believes in cover letters is how easy they make it for you to add one. Job seekers are coming up with many creative ways to stand out and called for the interview. For example, I read about an individual that uses “out of the box” tactics. He delivered a box of doughnuts to the hiring manager in person that contained his cover letter and resume. This may not be your cup of tea; however, this illustrates just one way each job seeker is unique in their own way of getting noticed.

Keep the cover letter in your career toolbox and pull it out when needed and appropriate. We hope this has helped you write your cover letter. If you would like us to research a company and write one for you, we customize cover letters for $89-99. Please send us a message at 201-667-2994 or https://JobSearchSuperhero.com/contact-form

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7 Steps – How to Use LinkedIn to Get Hired

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Send/Upload Current Résumé CV for FREE Critique

Always remember to explain, provide evidence, and create your own narrative online, before someone else does it for you.

If you want to follow the 7 steps to do it all yourself just scroll halfway down the page below the image of an optimized LinkedIn profile. Don’t forget to come back and comment here, or reach out to me directly to let me know how this strategy has or has not worked for you.

Why Hire Me

JOB SEARCH TIPS BLOG
Mill Montejo business card
Get a Job Search Superhero on your team!

WHO I AM – WHY HIRE ME TO HELP:

I am a Nationally Certified Online Profile Expert (NCOPE), and an active member of The National Résumé Writers Association. I was The NRWA’s Education Chair for a few months in 2012 and then I went on to serve 5 years as their first Social Media Community Manager.

  • I’ve spent 7+ years, developing résumés and profiles that convert into interviews and new jobs for job seekers.
  • Prior to that I was a Fleet & Operations Manager for 7 years that worked closely with Human Resources to recruit both drivers and operations staff.
  • I handled inbound candidates through the complete hiring lifecycle from their recruitment, to their interview, and thereafter where I was tasked to make hiring recommendations to my superiors. Finally once hired, I handled new employee on-boarding and training.
  • I became very passionate about putting the right (peg) candidate in the right (hole) job.
  • On average – 75% of my clients see an increase in LinkedIn profile views within days after I revamp their profile.
  • 85% of my résumé and or LinkedIn clients receive calls for an interview.
  • As of our most recent client feedback survey, we were thrilled to learn that an average of 75% of our clients have been interviewed or hired after we helped them with their career documents and LinkedIn profile.
  • We work with clients from all around the United States remotely using Skype, FaceTime, and other similar video chat options along with phone, text, and email to optimize their career brand.

WHAT CLIENTS SAY ABOUT ME:

To see valid, verifiable reviews of my resume writing business, written by my clients, please see Google reviews –> click here and also visit my LinkedIn recommendations, and a few Yelp reviews below.

WHY OPTIMIZE YOUR PROFILE:

Since Microsoft purchased LinkedIn last year and made changes to the platform, it has become the “place to be found for jobs.” Satya Nadella, C.E.O. of Microsoft specifically talked about integrating LinkedIn profiles with Outlook, Excel, PowerPoint, Skype, the Windows operating system, and other Microsoft products. To make members more productive and efficient in their search for work, Microsoft also plans to integrate Cortana, its digital assistant, with LinkedIn. The purchase of the platform also offers Microsoft plenty of user data about where LinkedIn members have worked, have gone to school, their hobbies, interests and more. Microsoft has improved the various paid service tiers for business users as well as LinkedIn Sales Navigator for building leads, and LinkedIn Recruiter for gathering all the information in one place about potential job candidates.

It is beneficial to you to become aware that in 2019, Recruiters are NOT waiting for applications. Often, they tell us that they are not even posting the open jobs on the web, and instead, they are actively searching for candidates on LinkedIn. This is why it is more urgent than ever that you are on the platform and that your profile has the correct keyword density and weight in different sections so it can rise in a recruiter search, so you can land on their short interview list.

WHAT MY LINKEDIN OPTIMIZATION SERVICE INCLUDES:

I help give people of all ages and industries a better chance of being called for an interview by keyword optimizing and developing a compelling LinkedIn profile for them.

  • This includes creating a keyword banner image from your résumé or offering alternate images related to their target industry.
  • Uploading and editing a new professional profile picture if needed that client provides.
  • Writing an impactful headline that shows measurable results right away. (See mine for an example at https://linkedin.com/in/MillMontejo)
  • Writing a keyword infused and grammatically correct summary of just under the 2000 character limit.
  • Finding alternate industry keywords you are missing and adding them so you can be found for them too.
  • Adding an education section with classes taken which will help raise your chances of being found as a candidate even if you did not achieve the degree.
  • Suggesting industry groups that you should join and adding an industry for you.
  • Provide step by step videos and tutorials on how to work your LinkedIn so you can be found for work.
LinkedIn Page After Optimization
Pharmaceutical Sales Rep – LinkedIn Profile After Optimization

✅ Want to do it yourself? Follow these 7 steps to success:

  1. A profile with a profile photo can result in 14x more views by recruiters and hiring managers than one without a photo.
  2. A 1st person conversational summary of at least 40 words and up to 2000 characters ranks high in Recruiter searches and is a prime section to add industry keywords related to your target 🎯 job role.
  3. Adding an industry to your profile can land you 15x more profile views.
  4. Members that include skills in their profile (up to 50) are 13x more likely to get profile views. Remember to add skills that mean the same thing but written in a different way to increase your chances of being found in a skills search.
  5. Members who include an Education section on their profile are 10x more likely to be found in a recruiter search. So even if you have not finished your studies or took some classes or semesters, list them anyway. Just write ‘pending’ or ‘in progress’ or ‘classes towards – major.’
  6. Make sure to add any volunteer experience in its own section or in the work history section to fill in for a gap in paid work. 42% of hiring managers surveyed by LinkedIn said they view volunteer experience as equivalent to traditional work experience.
  7. Make sure to join groups in your target 🎯 industry and engage in likes, comments, and conversation. Your profile is 5x more likely to turn up in a search result if you join and are active in groups.

Mill Montejo & The Talent Mill Team

https://JobSearchSuperhero.com website & blog
CONTACT THE JOB SEARCH SUPERHERO FOR HELP!

201-667-2994

⬇ I also answer job seekers questions on Quora ⬇
https://www.quora.com/profile/Mill-Montejo
Upload your résumé for a free critique where we tell you exactly how we can help & give you personalized project quote.
Upload your résumé for a free critique where we tell you exactly how we can help & give you personalized project quote.
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Top 10 Resume Writers Fake List – Don’t Rank Me Bro!

By Mill Montejo

Fake top 10 resume writers lists by some “Guy”

Over the last year and a half, hundreds of my fellow resume writers and I have been trolled by an Internet Marketer of sorts.

The “Guy” who will not be named because you don’t really search for his name and why give him extra Google traction. After all, you don’t search for his name. You search for a product and service that he claims to be the #1 at providing from here to Calcutta.

This Guy is not an expert in this service. He is simply a 26-year-old Internet marketer who sells job search services to executives for thousands of dollars. Lately, some of those genuine clients have started to leave him some real reviews like the two from Dawn S. and Sarah T. Pay close attention to not only the first but even a second response that he felt he had to leave to counter their statements.

This Guy has never been my client, or a business associate in any way. Where does he even get off reviewing his direct competitors without knowing their work directly, interviewing that specific writer’s clients, or even being an expert in the career services field? Until late 2018 to early 2019, I had never even heard of the dude. That is until the organization that I volunteered for during the first five years of my business and its members became the target of this character and the clandestine persona/s he portrays online.

The Guy’s Online Reviews of His Competitors

During 2018, and continuing into 2019, “the Guy” has attacked and tried to divert résumé writing work from legal and longtime U.S. and Canadian resume writing services and resume writers. This included:

• Buying paid links to generate traffic to his “conflict of interest” articles.

• Writing negative descriptions of resume writing services that are his competitors in multiple states in the country and rating his own as #1 in the same article.

• Engaging in making Libelous accusations regarding competitor companies.

• Engaging in sending threatening and nasty emails to his competitor, résumé writers.

• Contacting competitor writers through their contact forms on their website threatening them further when they reply to his fake top 10 list.

  • The Guy has been running a smear campaign against another writer who also happens to be an attorney that is fighting back suing him for deceptive marketing practices, libel, and defamation under Florida’s Deceptive and Unfair Trade Practices Act and the United States Copyright Act. Wendi Weiner is taking a stand for herself and for the résumé writing industry.

Actions to Protect the Public from Deceptive Reviews & False Claims

In March 2019, the Better Business Bureau asked this so-called expert to substantiate or remove his claims from his website and other locations. They then censured him when he did not comply with their request. To date he has:

• Removed some fake reviews from third-party sites.

• Added disclosures regarding conflicts of interest to 50 articles to his website that were missing before the BBB intervened.

Before the BBB’s censure action, two professional organizations removed the Guy from their membership in 2018:

  1. The Forbes-affiliated Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC).
  2. The Professional Association of Resume Writers (PARW).

These sites may have also learned of his marketing practices and appear to have stopped him from posting:

  1. LinkedIn Pulse.
  2. Quora.
  3. Indeed.

Various organizations are beginning to become aware of his unprofessional and unethical behavior and have restricted his ability to post on their sites. The Guy now appears to be constrained to posting his attacks on competitors to his website, findmyprofession.com.

In April 2019, one writer that was reviewed, and harassed with emails and consecutive posts about her filed suit against him. In this web post Attorney and Nationally Certified Résumé Writer Wendi Weiner shares with us the federal court proceeding for deceptive or unfair conduct, and material misrepresentation.

The 10 Best Resume Writers Scam

FindMyProfession.com currently contains “reviews” of the “10 best resume writers” in multiple cities and regions and uses algorithm gaming techniques to steal traffic and business from other writers in the following states:

  • Allentown, Atlanta, Austin,
  • Boston, Bridgeport, Buffalo,
  • California, Calgary, Charleston, Charlotte, Chicago, Colorado Springs, Columbus,
  • Dallas, Denver, Detroit,
  • Edmonton, El Paso,
  • Ft. Worth,
  • Grand Rapids,
  • Hartford, Houston,
  • Indianapolis,
  • Jacksonville,
  • Kansas City,
  • Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Louisville,
  • Memphis, Miami, Milwaukee, Minneapolis, Montreal,
  • Nashville, New Orleans, New York City, New Jersey
  • Orlando, Ottawa,
  • Philadelphia, Phoenix, Portland, Providence,
  • Richmond,
  • Sacramento, St. Louis, Salt Lake City, San Antonio,
    San Diego, San Francisco, San Jose, Seattle, Silicon Valley,
  • Tampa, Toronto, Tucson,
  • Vancouver, Ventura, Virginia Beach,
  • Washington, D.C., and Winnipeg.

This expert career coach and #1 résumé writer in the world doesn’t appear to have hired any of these resume writers that he or his company reviews.

He continues to self-review his own company and attacking the SEO ranking of global competitors. He now claims that he is the best résumé writing service in India and Australia.

There is no limit to what this Guy is the BEST at. Just Google his website and see for yourself then remember the old adage, “buyer beware.” Read all the negative stuff he has written to and about other professional writers in the links I have provided. He has even used foul language in the emails.

The Right Way to Find a Professional Resume Writer

The best way to find a professional résumé writer that engages in ethical practices, has some type of certification by a national organization, and participates continuous professional development is by going to the following pages:

  1. https://thenrwa.com/nationallycertifiedonlineprofileexperts for LinkedIn Profile Writers
  2. https://thenrwa.com/nationallycertifiedresumewriters for Nationally Certified Résumé Writers
  3. https://thenrwa.com/professionalresumewriters for Professional Résumé Writers

If you would like to see valid, verifiable reviews of my resume writing business, written by my clients, please click here or visit my LinkedIn recommendations.

Six Secrets to Optimize Your LinkedIn Profile So You Can Land the Interview

Get a Job Search Superhero on your team!

To answer the question “does having a professionally written, completed and keyword optimized LinkedIn profile really get it looked at by more recruiters?” one only has to ask: where/who do YOU turn to when you need something? When you need to find an auto mechanic, a plumber, a way to get restaurant food delivered to your home, an answer to self-diagnose a suspected illness (although I wouldn’t recommend this), and just about any question you can think of = you search the internet. Therefore, to cut the job search process in half job-seekers must accept that their skills are now best highlighted on the web. LinkedIn has become that platform even more than before since their purchase by Microsoft. With Microsoft’s dominance in cloud based Office 365 software, their goal of LinkedIn becoming a go-to place for recruiters to find candidates was an easy pivot.

Everyone has likely heard about “keyword resumes,” and how keywords that match the job advertisement are critical for your résumé being selected for the interview. But did you know that it is even more important to write a powerful, keyword infused LinkedIn headline that offers a value proposition and gets you noticed? Did you know that having a well-written summary with results oriented statements can get you selected for the next step of an interview? Yes, the résumé is important and is your entry-ticket to the interview, but you will job search while you sleep if you have a well written and optimized LinkedIn profile. See some action steps below to do it yourself, or setup a time to chat with us if you want us to handle it all for you.

1) USE THE KEYWORDS AND ACRONYMS RELATED TO YOUR INDUSTRY
Different recruiters type alternate keywords into their searches, so to raise your chances of being found use common variations of the keywords in your LinkedIn summary, and skills section. For example, if you want a job in New York, use the word “New York,” and/or “New York City,” the abbreviation “NYC” and the postal code “NY” wherever you can on your LinkedIn profile. This way when a recruiter types in a filtered or specific search for a job-seeker from NYC you stand a better chance of being one of the profile results returned in their search.

Keywords are crucial to your job search

2) DON’T SAY YOU ARE LOOKING FOR YOUR NEXT OPPORTUNITY

Instead, use that precious profile real estate space that ranks high in a search to promote what you can do for a new employer. If you were an employer or recruiter looking at a LinkedIn profile, who would you call in for an interview? The person who has this headline for their LinkedIn profile:

“Looking forward to my next opportunity where I can lend my talents to a productive team.”

                                                                         OR 

Director of Sales Emerging Markets ► identify & evaluate opportunities ► develop & execute strategy ► drive sales growth

Obviously the 2nd headline is not only more of an eye catcher telling me what the person’s general career role has been, how they work, and the positive results of their work, all including many keywords (in italic) that usually appear in the job advertisements that person is targeting.

3) ADD ALL RELEVANT SKILLS FOR YOUR TARGET JOB INDUSTRY

When the ‘endorsements’ feature was first added to LinkedIn many though it was pointless to endorse others. How could folks that did not know you possibly endorse you for the work? Well, the endorsements have not gone away and people that connect with you see your posts and learn about your expertise. The skills section while not ranking as high in a search as the headline and summary do, still count as keywords. You should think of all the acronyms, and different skills related to your target industry and add them. Don’t forget to move them around and place the ones you wish to be recognized for up at the top as most folks when prompted will endorse you on the top three skills displayed.

4) DON’T JUST COPY AND PASTE YOUR RESUME

When LinkedIn first started many were copying and pasting their résumé into the job description sections and calling it a day. That is not an accepted practice today since recruiters and potential employers will always seek you out on LinkedIn and are looking to find out more about you. We now write the LinkedIn summary in first person, in a business casual tone, that includes results based statements about how your work has impacted previous employers in a positive way. We need to remember to write our work summaries so we come across as an “achiever” and not simply a “doer.” So as you write your new LinkedIn summary think not so much about what you did for past employers, but think about what the positive results were because of your daily work.

5) ADD AN INDUSTRY RELATED BANNER IMAGE

Go to a site like https://pexels.com and search your industry keywords to see what free banners are available. This website gives you many free downloads to choose from. Some images will be Adobe stock which are on sale for reasonable prices if you really must have that specific image. But there are enough free images that you can easily replace the default LinkedIn teal section above your profile photo. You can also make yourself a keyword banner for free by copying and pasting your résumé into the website https://wordle.net and trying different color patterns and keyword variations in the image you will convert into a banner.

Don’t forget to add a banner related to your target industry or just a pretty sunset

6) ADD A PROFESSIONAL PROFILE PHOTO VISIBLE TO ALL

Resist the temptation of using an old wedding photo and cropping someone out, or a car selfie, or an outdoors hiking photo unless you’re a business dude running that type of business. Certain LinkedIn users will use a photo that represents their brand or niche like I did with my own cartoon-like profile photo. I chose this because I wear the label of Job Search Superhero so I felt the comic art was appropriate for my brand. I am also an artist who has a passion for superheroes and have been drawing them since I was a teenager. However, LinkedIn profile image best practices recommended by seasoned writers across the USA agree that a profile photo should be taken of you wearing at minimum business casual attire and sitting or standing in front of a light-colored background. The tools built into LinkedIn will help you resize the image but it is best if it is shot from about three to five feet away and from the chest up.

In closing, there are many actions you can take to promote your career brand online that will get the attention of recruiters and hiring managers. But you have to work your social media like you worked your job because every keyboard click on LinkedIn signals you are an active user and raises your profile in searches. You have to join LinkedIn groups and engage in conversation or post your own articles and conversation. All of this connects you with the people that could potentially hire you, or steer you towards your next work gig. Job searching in the digital job market is not for the faint of heart. But I have faith that you can do it! We are here to help!

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