11 06

Writing good linkedin summary

writing good linkedin summary

Like your resume and your cover letter, you know that a LinkedIn profile is must-have in your job search. It’s not only a great platform for job seekers to showcase their work, but it also has the added benefit of having recruiters crawling all over it.

So, it makes perfect sense for people to optimize their profile’s potential. However, a surprising number of people ignore the most flexible and, arguably, most useful part: the “Summary” section.

I get it, though. It’s open-ended, and a blank canvas can be scary. To help you get a sense of what you can—and should—get across with your summary, here are three fantastic lessons (plus three great examples) to learn from.

1. Make Sure Your Personality Shines Through

From Jenny Foss

My business cards say such things as career strategist, recruiter and resume writer.

But when you get right down to it, I’m much more—I’m a marketer, an entrepreneur, a blogger, a social media strategist and a technical geek (ask me anything about robots, 18-wheelers or applicant tracking systems, seriously).

I’m also a big believer in the power of branding.

I believe that we, as humans, don’t buy “stuff.” We don’t make decisions based on features and benefits. We make decisions based on emotion, “gut feel” and brand promise.

We buy when we are moved. We buy when we are captivated and engaged to the point that we drop whatever it is we’re doing and say, “Oh, heck yes. I need me some of THAT.”

And so I teach people and companies how to create that reaction. I teach job seekers and corporations seeking new talent how to communicate their brands in memorable, engaging, and high personality ways, so that they will attract the right audiences and move them toward their core goals.

Specialties include: Job search strategy, career coaching, resume writing, recruiting, LinkedIn makeovers, copy writing, corporate outplacement, public speaking/presentations, social media marketing and branding. I’m also very good at Scrabble and I make a mean margarita.

I’m right over at [email protected] if you ever want to talk careers, job search or marketing. You can also find me at JobJenny.com.

Jenny Foss’ summary is unbelievable. It manages to cram so much personality into 250 words (or less!) that I feel like she’s a close friend, even though I’ve never met her before. Yes, LinkedIn is a professional social network, but that doesn’t mean you have to speak in the third person and drone on and on about how many years of experience you have.

Secondly, Jenny (see, I think I’m on a first name basis with her) has carefully woven in a pitch for her services without make you feel like you’re being sold something. The summary, rather than the experience section, is the perfect place for you to let people know what you have to offer. In fact, you don’t necessarily need to go into your experience too much since it’s right below the summary. Instead, dive further into your beliefs, motivations, or values—the intangibles that are generally harder to convey in your experience.

2. Make Sure You Have a Strong Pick-up Line

From Adrian Granzella Larssen

I’m not your average editor.

Of course, I have strong writing skills, geek out over traffic spikes, and proofread my own text messages. But I’m also a project manager, community builder, and team leader (and pretty good party planner, so I’ve been told).

My background, while extensive, isn’t traditional. As editor-in-chief and first official employee of The Muse—the career and job search platform that helps millions of people figure out what they want to do and thrive once they get there—I have built our publication, The Daily Muse, and fast-growing community from the ground up.

In the past three years, I’ve recruited an incredible team of 500+ freelance writers, career experts, and lifestyle contributors, garnered awards such as Forbes Top 100 Sites for Women and Top 75 Sites for Your Career, and created editorial content that readers truly, truly love. I’ve also significantly increased our audience (4 million UVs/month) and managed syndication partnerships with Time, Inc., Mashable, and Forbes, to name a (notable) few.

Currently, I oversee all digital content strategy and creation, including 50+ articles/week, videos, branded content, and The Muse’s education platform, Muse U. Previously, I worked at a university of a different sort, managing print and digital communications and editorial strategy for the George Washington University Medical Center.

In a nutshell, my passion for content is coupled with a love for big-picture planning and daily operational management. I’m not the editor who just wants to write. I’m the editor who actually wants to edit—and plan, ideate, and lead. This is what I do best and love most.

When I first saw Adrian Granzella Larssen’s summary, the idiom, “hook, line, and sinker,” came to mind. There was no way I wasn’t going to read the entire thing after that first line. If you want someone to take the time to go through your whole summary, consider writing an irresistible opening line, and then tying everything back to it. An old trick perhaps, but it works.

As the Editor-in-Chief of The Muse, it’s no surprise that Adrian has racked up some impressive accomplishments. That’s not what makes her summary so interesting, though. It’s actually the numbers that really bring the huge scope of the work she does to life. Don’t underestimate what a few numbers can do to highlight your skills and experiences.

3. Make Sure You Connect All the Dots

From Scott R. Murray

I got my start writing poetry and teaching fiction. I’m good with words and I get stories. Need a website that works, a brand that resonates and social media that's human? I can help.

I have over six years of experience in higher ed and academic non-profit communications. I’ve also clocked five years of grad school, which totals thousands of writing hours. I’ve honed clever, clear and concise, so I can create content that informs, delights and inspires.

Teaching taught me the most: to work with people where they are, figure out their needs and show up prepared to add value to their lives. It takes passion and guts to run a classroom, imagination and humor to keep folks checked in, and empathy and patience to provide useful feedback.

I now employ these strengths in managing successful content processes, developing digital resources, and connecting virtual communities.

Below are links to projects I’m proud of: website collaborations, social media campaigns I’ve managed, news articles I’ve written, and shout-outs my work has earned. See something you like? I’m an InMail away. (Or a tweet @strangewander.)

I frequently present with Scott on how to best use LinkedIn, and we always use his summary as a model. His paragraphs are pithy, with each serving a clear purpose. Scott has a pretty unconventional background for a communications guy, but somehow, he’s managed to tell one cohesive story connecting his writing, teaching, social media savvy, and communications expertise.

That’s exactly why I constantly show off his summary and refer to it. The summary is the place for you to connect the dots of your experience—and this is an example of exactly that done incredibly well.

There are plenty of good LinkedIn summaries out there, but these three just happen to be my favorites. They also happen to be longer than many. You might not necessarily need to write as much to get your story across. But, whatever you do write, remember to imbue some of your personality, have a hook, and tie it altogether. It’ll make all the difference.

Photo of happy woman courtesy of Shutterstock.

3 Tips for Writing a Good LinkedIn Summary - The Muse

writing good linkedin summary 5 LinkedIn Summary Templates to Try - The Muse

Summary LinkedIn Awesome Examples Two (with Templates.

The whole thing is only a paragraph, but you’re already scrolling down to the Experience section—or even clicking away from the page.

Having a great summary (like these!) is essential. After all, it’s one of the most important areas of your entire profile: It sums up your professional history, qualifications, and personality. Plus, it can (and should) give viewers a clear idea of what they should do next—whether that’s accepting your connection request, recruiting you for a job opening, or reaching out for networking purposes.

If you’re looking for inspiration, check out these five different summary templates—there’s one for every kind of person on LinkedIn.

1. The Mission-Based Summary

Every brand has stories to tell—stories that will not only engage, inform, surprise, delight, and impact their audience, but that will also deliver on measurable business goals.

While I was hiking, I thought about quitting approximately 5,000 times. (And that’s a lowball estimate.) But despite the high winds, low altitude, mental and physical fatigue, and trail mix overdose, I kept going. I’m that person. Once I say I’ll do something, it will happen.

Now, I put that perseverance to work as a senior account manager for Polar. I don’t have to climb any mountains…but I do have to move them.

I’m well-versed in negotiations, planning and development, relationship management, operations, and logistics coordination and scheduling.

If you’re interested in grabbing coffee and talking shop (or to hear how I almost fell off the mountain at 27K feet), please send an email my way.

If you’re really looking to hook people, begin with an anecdote that demonstrates one or two key personality traits.

Because this type of summary focuses more on soft skills than on hard skills, it’s ideal for two types of users: the networkers and the less-experienced.

You’ll likely see an increase in the number of connections you make, as well as the number of people who accept your coffee invites.

And it’s also great if you’re still a student or relatively new to the professional world. Instead of being confined to a short, two or three sentence bio explaining what limited experience you have, you can flesh out your character traits to help people learn more about you.

3. The Short and Sweet Summary

I have over 15 years of experience working in data science. Currently, I work as Asana’s Senior Data Manager, improving products and services for our customers by using advanced analytics, standing up big-data analytical tools, creating and maintaining models, and onboarding compelling new data sets.

Previously, I was the Chief Data Scientist at Guru, where I analyzed data from some of the biggest enterprise and networks in the world to educate the market on long-term internet trends.

For example, if you’re a lawyer, you want to make it easy for people to see how long you’ve been practicing law, what your qualifications are, and the type of work you specialize in. (Plus, getting too creative might undermine your credibility.)

This also works for active job hunters. Why? It allows you to get a lot of keywords in, which will help advance you in the search results when a recruiter looks for someone who fits your profile.

Whatever the case, a short and sweet summary should include your current role, previous positions (if they’re relevant or notable), and your skills.

4. The Blended Summary

I’m a talent acquisition specialist with an interest in building the most effective workforces possible. For over 20 years, I’ve been helping businesses find their perfect hires. I also do consulting on compensation and benefits, new hire processes, and company culture.

If you’d like to learn more about how my services can help your company, please reach out via email ([email protected]).

As the name suggests, this summary is a blend between the personality and the mission versions. It’s perfect if you want to get straight to the facts, but you also want some levity in your description. I’d suggest it for professionals in more creative industries and people whose work involves lots of other people (think sales reps, managers, or HR specialists).

To make this work, begin with your current job and a couple work accomplishments or highlights, then add some “fun facts.” However, make sure they’re not too fun—“I love karaoke (ask me about my Mariah Carey cover)” is fine. “My personal motto is ‘It’s 5 PM somewhere!’” is probably not. When in doubt, leave it out.

If you need more help nailing the perfect tone for this one, just imagine you’re talking to someone you just met at an industry event.

In 2013, my online brand campaign for the Dorsey Children’s Hospital won a GDUSA award, one of the most prestigious honors in the graphic design industry.

My work has also been featured in Creatique Bloq, Compound Magazine, and on the Creative Review blog.

Skills: logo design, web design, branding and identity, typography, UI design, packaging, CSS, HTML, InDesign, Photoshop, Illustrator

If you have a project I can help with, please get in touch.

I love the accomplishments summary for those who are seeking work—either a full-time position or freelance gigs. It cuts to the chase and tells potential employers or clients exactly why you deserve the job, as well as the (high) caliber of work they can expect from you.

And you’re not limited to awards, speaking engagements, or positive press. Something like “I planned and implemented a new social media strategy that tripled our online engagement in six months” works too.

So, it makes perfect sense for people to optimize their profile’s potential. However, a surprising number of people ignore the most flexible and, arguably, most useful part: the “Summary” section.

I get it, though. It’s open-ended, and a blank canvas can be scary. To help you get a sense of what you can—and should—get across with your summary, here are three fantastic lessons (plus three great examples) to learn from.

1. Make Sure Your Personality Shines Through

From Jenny Foss

My business cards say such things as career strategist, recruiter and resume writer.

But when you get right down to it, I’m much more—I’m a marketer, an entrepreneur, a blogger, a social media strategist and a technical geek (ask me anything about robots, 18-wheelers or applicant tracking systems, seriously).

I’m also a big believer in the power of branding.

I believe that we, as humans, don’t buy “stuff.” We don’t make decisions based on features and benefits. We make decisions based on emotion, “gut feel” and brand promise.

And so I teach people and companies how to create that reaction. I teach job seekers and corporations seeking new talent how to communicate their brands in memorable, engaging, and high personality ways, so that they will attract the right audiences and move them toward their core goals.

Specialties include: Job search strategy, career coaching, resume writing, recruiting, LinkedIn makeovers, copy writing, corporate outplacement, public speaking/presentations, social media marketing and branding. I’m also very good at Scrabble and I make a mean margarita.

I’m right over at [email protected] if you ever want to talk careers, job search or marketing. You can also find me at JobJenny.com.

Jenny Foss’ summary is unbelievable. It manages to cram so much personality into 250 words (or less!) that I feel like she’s a close friend, even though I’ve never met her before. Yes, LinkedIn is a professional social network, but that doesn’t mean you have to speak in the third person and drone on and on about how many years of experience you have.

The summary, rather than the experience section, is the perfect place for you to let people know what you have to offer. In fact, you don’t necessarily need to go into your experience too much since it’s right below the summary. Instead, dive further into your beliefs, motivations, or values—the intangibles that are generally harder to convey in your experience.

2. Make Sure You Have a Strong Pick-up Line

From Adrian Granzella Larssen

I’m not your average editor.

Of course, I have strong writing skills, geek out over traffic spikes, and proofread my own text messages. But I’m also a project manager, community builder, and team leader (and pretty good party planner, so I’ve been told).

My background, while extensive, isn’t traditional. As editor-in-chief and first official employee of The Muse—the career and job search platform that helps millions of people figure out what they want to do and thrive once they get there—I have built our publication, The Daily Muse, and fast-growing community from the ground up.

I’ve also significantly increased our audience (4 million UVs/month) and managed syndication partnerships with Time, Inc., Mashable, and Forbes, to name a (notable) few.

Currently, I oversee all digital content strategy and creation, including 50+ articles/week, videos, branded content, and The Muse’s education platform, Muse U. Previously, I worked at a university of a different sort, managing print and digital communications and editorial strategy for the George Washington University Medical Center.

In a nutshell, my passion for content is coupled with a love for big-picture planning and daily operational management. I’m not the editor who just wants to write. I’m the editor who actually wants to edit—and plan, ideate, and lead. This is what I do best and love most.

When I first saw Adrian Granzella Larssen’s summary, the idiom, “hook, line, and sinker,” came to mind. There was no way I wasn’t going to read the entire thing after that first line. If you want someone to take the time to go through your whole summary, consider writing an irresistible opening line, and then tying everything back to it.

That’s not what makes her summary so interesting, though. It’s actually the numbers that really bring the huge scope of the work she does to life. Don’t underestimate what a few numbers can do to highlight your skills and experiences.

3. Make Sure You Connect All the Dots

From Scott R. Murray

I got my start writing poetry and teaching fiction. I’m good with words and I get stories. Need a website that works, a brand that resonates and social media that's human? I can help.

I have over six years of experience in higher ed and academic non-profit communications. I’ve also clocked five years of grad school, which totals thousands of writing hours. I’ve honed clever, clear and concise, so I can create content that informs, delights and inspires.

Teaching taught me the most: to work with people where they are, figure out their needs and show up prepared to add value to their lives. It takes passion and guts to run a classroom, imagination and humor to keep folks checked in, and empathy and patience to provide useful feedback.

See something you like? I’m an InMail away. (Or a tweet @strangewander.)

I frequently present with Scott on how to best use LinkedIn, and we always use his summary as a model. His paragraphs are pithy, with each serving a clear purpose. Scott has a pretty unconventional background for a communications guy, but somehow, he’s managed to tell one cohesive story connecting his writing, teaching, social media savvy, and communications expertise.

That’s exactly why I constantly show off his summary and refer to it. The summary is the place for you to connect the dots of your experience—and this is an example of exactly that done incredibly well.

There are plenty of good LinkedIn summaries out there, but these three just happen to be my favorites. They also happen to be longer than many. You might not necessarily need to write as much to get your story across. But, whatever you do write, remember to imbue some of your personality, have a hook, and tie it altogether. It’ll make all the difference.

Photo of happy woman courtesy of Shutterstock.

) is essential. After all, it’s one of the most important areas of your entire profile: It sums up your professional history, qualifications, and personality. Plus, it can (and should) give viewers a clear idea of what they should do next—whether that’s accepting your connection request, recruiting you for a job opening, or reaching out for networking purposes.

If you’re looking for inspiration, check out these five different summary templates—there’s one for every kind of person on LinkedIn.

1. The Mission-Based Summary

Every brand has stories to tell—stories that will not only engage, inform, surprise, delight, and impact their audience, but that will also deliver on measurable business goals.

, Burger King, and Netflix.

My specialties include digital media, consumer behavior, brand awareness, and omni-channel marketing campaigns.

The mission-based summary opens with a broad description of what you do, then gets more and more specific. This is a great choice if you’re using LinkedIn to engage with a variety of people. After all, someone who’s unfamiliar with the field is probably hazy on what “content strategy” means—but everyone understands “telling stories for brands.”

It also shows that you get the bigger picture. You understand why your job encompasses more than your daily to-do list.

Not metaphorically—I literally climbed the highest mountain on Earth.

While I was hiking, I thought about quitting approximately 5,000 times. (And that’s a lowball estimate.) But despite the high winds, low altitude, mental and physical fatigue, and trail mix overdose, I kept going. I’m that person. Once I say I’ll do something, it will happen.

Now, I put that perseverance to work as a senior account manager for Polar. I don’t have to climb any mountains…but I do have to move them.

I’m well-versed in negotiations, planning and development, relationship management, operations, and logistics coordination and scheduling.

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