Why your LinkedIN profile needs a good photo

LinkedIN pix

I was lazily scrolling through LinkedIN the other day and got to that bit where people who you may know are served up to you as in some professional speed dating site (not that I know what that looks like). You know, the rows and rows of people who are linked to people you are linked to, hence LinkedIN’s clever little algorithm thinks they might make good connections for you.

As I scrolled down, I noticed that less than half had a proper photo – a neat, professional-looking head and shoulders shot taken with a neutral background that clearly shows the person concerned. About a quarter had no photo at all (what are they hiding?), just that grey shadow image that LinkedIN defaults to if someone hasn’t even bothered to upload a picture of themselves. About another quarter had photos from the beach, or the logo of their company, or a cartoon, kids pictures, bad selfie, a tiny photo, squished photo, blurry photo, a studio (I am not making this up), a picture of 5 people (this is not Facebook!)… you get the picture (or not, as they case may be).

So I was wondering what these people were playing at. I assume this was done through either laziness (they’ve not got around to getting a proper photo done), or they did not know how to take or upload a photo, or they genuinely thought the logo was the done thing, or the beach shot was ‘kewl’. Now, I’m not saying I’m some expert, but if I’m looking to make a new connection (or recognise an old one) I go straight to the face. I think we all do. Human nature.

To me, no clear photo means you are either trying to hide something or do not know how to network online or have nefarious intent (like spamming, or monotonous self promotion). Either way, I’m moving on.

In my frustration, I posted this to my LinkedIN status:

I don’t understand people on LinkedIN who do not have a photo of themselves in their profile… (or worse, a bad one).

It would appear I am not alone. Here are some of the comments I received …

  1. Matt Edwards Matt Edwards

    Some of us don’t have much to work with Charlie 🙂

  2. Danny Grillo Danny Grillo

    Serious? – Pole Dancing?

  3. Lyn Hawkins Lyn Hawkins

    Matthew Wallis take note. It’s not just me who thinks this way…

  4. Matthew Wallis Matthew Wallis

    thanks Lyn Hawkins! Duly noted 🙂

  5. Marisse de Wet Marisse de Wet

    Or that view your profile anonymously … Really..?!?

  6. Rob Haynes Rob Haynes

    Or have out of date contact details, or no contact details at all…….

  7. Cameron Gurr Cameron Gurr

    No contact details are better than out of date ones. You can always hit someone up through the messaging service. But bad photos…

  8. Peter Taliangis Peter Taliangis

    Yes Charlie Gunningham as you know it is the first tip in my Linkedin presentations – Good Photo – want to see you face – want it to match the person I meet when I see you in “Your Job” – Dont want to see a logo, ball photo, wedding photo, night club photo, photo with more than one person in it, selfie taken at the beach in your bikini etc etc Sevgi Erogul, Matt Edwards, Danny Grillo, Lyn Hawkins, Matthew Wallis, Marisse de Wet, Rod Haynes, Cameron Gurr 🙂

  9. Warren Hinchliffe Warren Hinchliffe

    I agree completely re photos, no logos, cartoons or poor quality holiday or boozy party iPhone snaps. I have seen some shockers and have occasionally sent people a message that it is not in their best interest. Get someone to take it for you, well lit, well focused AND well dressed. If you can’t get a friend or rellie to take it, get a professional. Even one from a shopping centre booth.

Notice 9 out of the 10 have nice profile photos, except in one case, who was called out on it, and saw the error of their way!

So, dear LinkedIN wannabe connection, get a proper photo done. First impressions count you know, and usually last.

Pic Credit: examples taken from Andrew McCarthy.com

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One thought on “Why your LinkedIN profile needs a good photo

  1. It never ceases to amaze me how many people get this wrong…. We have seen photo’s with pets. photos with the rest of the family on holidays and even a photo of a person holding a rifle…..! LI is meant to be a professional network and an avenue for presenting job opportunities … some of these profile pictures are not a great start!!!

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