Have you ever seen a LinkedIn profile picture that made you want to talk to your computer screen? You know what I mean. There you are, checking LinkedIn for new connections like you do every few weeks, when all of a sudden, bingo-bango, you’ve got a few connection requests waiting for you—500+ connections here you come!
You quickly scan the profile avatars to see your latest six-degrees-connectors and then you see it. You’re not sure exactly what this person was thinking, but you’re pretty sure it’s not the kind of “professional headshot” LinkedIn had in mind.
Where Facebook can be slightly more forgiving when it comes to profile pictures due to the personal nature of its take on social networking, LinkedIn definitely is not.
So how do you keep your LinkedIn Profile picture looking picture perfect? You can start by avoiding these 10 LinkedIn Profile Picture faux pas complete with shameless examples from our editor, Adrianna:
10 LinkedIn Profile Photos Every Professional Needs to Avoid
1. Duck lips of any kind shot
I don’t really think this needs an explanation.
2. Sexy, come hither smolder shot
I do NOT want to feel like your profile picture is undressing me with your eyes or worse, indicates that you’re willing to bare it all for your next career move.
3. The mugshot
Will a smile hurt you? Are you trying to look like a serial killer? Also, what’s with the dead eyes? You probably need a lesson on smizing ala Tyra Banks.
4. The crop out shot
Why are there extra arms or ears in your picture? I’m just trying to connect with you, not the entire cast of Friends.
5. The glamour shot
I. Can’t. Even. Just no. And why is there always a prop? Also see #6.
6. Fountain of Youth shot
Who do you think you’re fooling when your resume spans 20+ years?
7. The casual Friday shot
Unless you work in a tech startup where every day is casual Friday, and even then, shoot for business casual.
8. The adult beverage shot
Are you a sommelier? No? Step away from the bar.
9. The not-a-picture-of-you shot
Yeah, I don’t care about your dog, cat, kids, or stunning landscape photography.
10. The blank avatar shot
How do I even know you’re real? Is this the kind of effort I can expect from you? If so, next please.
The Bottom Line on LinkedIn Profile Pictures
Your LinkedIn profile picture might not make or break your career, but it is an important tool to have at the ready when you need it. With more and more people taking real-life engagement online, you want to make sure that your social profiles clearly reflect who you are as a person and as a professional. Think of your profile picture as your brand logo.
Pro Tip: Make sure your profile picture reflects how you look in real life. Don’t go overboard with make-up, hair, and wardrobe if that’s not your norm!