This is a guest post from Jenna Potter, the Social Media & Content Executive at CHS Group. 

Jenna sends out a Weekly Roundup email series where she selects her favourite 4+ resources every week that help PAs, EAs and VAs advance their career and life. Get it sent to your inbox here.

When was the last time you spruced up your LinkedIn profile?

Most people just set it and forget it, but LinkedIn can be a massively helpful tool for you as an Assistant.

Here’s our four-step guide to getting your LinkedIn profile looking great and ready to impress. 

The first step to creating the perfect LinkedIn profile is to determine what you want to get out of the platform. Who are you hoping will visit your profile?

  • Are you on the hunt for a new job? 
  • Are you using it to network with other industry professionals? 
  • Or looking to supercharge your venue sourcing efforts? 

Your goals will always be evolving, and your LinkedIn profile should reflect those changes.

Now that you have your current goal decided, let’s walk through our 4-day checklist to get your LinkedIn profile looking amazing. Each step will take you about 10-15 minutes per day, so set a timer and let’s get started.

Update Your Headline

Your LinkedIn headline is one of the most important sections of your profile.

Not only is it the first place people scan when coming across your profile, but it also decides when you pop up in a search result.

For example, if a blogger wants to get in touch with your boss for an interview, they would head to LinkedIn to search for their assistant (that’s you). If you’ve properly filled out your headline, you’ll pop up in the search results and be on your merry way to securing an amazing promotional opportunity for your boss. Brownie points for you!

That headline would look something like this:

Executive Assistant of Sally Brown @ Coffee Empires | Winner of Executive Assistant of the Year 2018

You get 120 characters for your LinkedIn headline.

Most people only use a quarter of what they’re allowed. That’s a huge wasted opportunity to make a bigger impact with your headline!

Start with the most important information at the beginning of your headline and include those important keywords like “Executive Assistant”, “Personal Assistant” or “Virtual Assistant.” The rest of the space is your time to shine! Include a career highlight, how many years of experience you have or any awards you have won. 

You can also use this space to talk about your other professional interests. Do you run a blog on the side? Are you a big advocate for a charitable cause? All great points to mention in your headline!

If you’re looking for a new job, you should invite recruiters in with a headline that calls out to them. 

For example: 

Executive Assistant Seeking New Opportunity in Birmingham  | 8+ Years Experience | Winner of PA of the Year Award 2019

Once you’ve written a search-friendly headline, it’s time to update your profile and cover photo.

Update Your Profile Photo

Having a professional, yet friendly profile photo will make you more approachable and trustworthy on LinkedIn.

Here are some best practices for putting your best face forward with your profile photo:

  • Use a professional headshot
  • Include your head and shoulders only
  • Smile!

Now that that’s done, let’s move on to writing a captivating summary.

Write a Professional Summary

This is the place where you get to elaborate even more about who you are.

Again, go back to asking yourself what you want to achieve from LinkedIn and what kind of people you’re hoping will land on your profile.

Now write a summary that talks directly to them, telling them what they want to hear.

Stuck for ideas? Here are a few for inspiration:

  • Show off some real-life stats (Did you improve the efficiency of your executive’s workflow? By how much?)
  • Do you have any professional interests or causes you’re passionate about? (Eg. Starting an environmental initiative at your workplace)
  • Show your passion for being an Assistant – what do you find rewarding about your career?
  • Is your team currently hiring? Mention it!

Ask for Recommendations

Before you check out a new restaurant, do you go online first and read the reviews? 

The better the reviews, the more likely you are to visit.

LinkedIn Recommendations work in the same way. If you have a glowing review from a former boss, client or co-worker, you’re going to get more people reaching out to you. 

Even if you’re perfectly happy with your role now and you’re not on the hunt for your next career opportunity, it’s still a good idea to collect a few Recommendations to future-proof your profile. You never know when they’ll come in handy.

Now, do you ask for a recommendation from someone without making it awkward?

Here are a few tips to help make recommendations easy for both you and the person you’re asking:

  • Don’t send out mass requests for recommendations that are generic (LinkedIn limits you to three requests at a time anyway). In order to make a good impression, request a recommendation from people one by one and take your time in your request. Make it personal to them and show your appreciation if they accept the request.
  • In your request, give them an idea of what to write. Let them know what topics you want to cover.

Here’s an example: 

“Hi, Jane! I hope you’re well. I wanted to reach out to you since I had such a great experience working with you. I’m currently updating my LinkedIn profile and I would be so grateful if you would write up a Recommendation I can publish, talking about things like what we worked on together and what your experience was like working with me. I would be very appreciative, but there’s no obligation at all. I will, of course, return the favour too if you’re interested. I hope to speak with you soon! Thanks, Brendon.”

And that’s it! All it takes is a simple message.

We hope you found this guide helpful! Following this four-step plan to improve your LinkedIn profile will get you reaching your goals faster. 

If you want more resources like this, subscribe to our Weekly Roundup newsletter where we hand-pick our favourite actionable ideas to help PAs, EAs and VAs advance their career and life.