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Buzzwords to Remove from your LinkedIn Profile

by Gerald Balmek (2019-05-14)

Your LinkedIn profile is your online resume. Recruiters and HR professionals are searching the largest professional network for qualified candidates to hire. You want to put as much time and energy into your LinkedIn profile as your resume so you can get found by the right people. Paying attention to the words and phrases you use to describe your experience is important. When faced with writers block, it’s easy to fall into cliché terminology to describe your experience. Buzzwords are a black hole. They are empty and don’t really mean much of anything; kind of like the nothingness of space! If you don't know how to make an attractive LinkedIn profile on your own and how to write a resume at all, ask for professional help, because executive resume writing service costis extremely low. Recently, LinkedIn released a list of the 10 most overused words on profiles.

In order:

  1. Motivated
  2. Passionate
  3. Creative
  4. Driven
  5. Extensive experience
  6. Responsible
  7. Strategic
  8. Track record
  9. Organized
  10. Expert
  11. Innovative
  12. Dynamic

These words are easy to fall victim to when trying to describe your experience and not really having a handle on it. Guess what, you aren’t alone, everyone else is using these exact same words so often that they sound completely empty and boring. The more you can quantify and qualify your experience the better your chances of impressing the hiring managers. Here’s how.

A good way to start building your LinkedIn profile is mapping out your career history in specific stories. Open a word document and jot down a few key instances when your experience shined through. This will help give you a road map to follow and put you in the mood to describe your experiences with specifics instead of buzzing around it. 

Show it don’t blow it

Being enthusiastic about your job and the industry you’re working in is very important to hiring managers. Plus, it’s important to your own career success. You are a motivated, passionate and driven individual and killing any chance of getting a job by using those words! How do you show your ambition and drive without using buzzwords? LinkedIn has a Recommendations request function where you can ask colleagues, clients and bosses to sing your praises on your profile.

To ask for a recommendation, hover over your picture on the right hand side of the LinkedIn home screen once you have logged in. Click the “Privacy & Settings” tab from the drop down and from that screen choose “Manager Your Recommendations” then click “Ask for Recommendations.”  Don’t ask your mother or your significant other to write a recommendation. Think of these as your online references. Be choosey and only pick people who have seen you display all the buzzwords from the above list. Also keep in mind, when asking for recommendations be sure to mention specifics. Ask them to describe a certain project that you excelled in instead of just a general recommendation. 

If you contribute to industry publications or are involved in an organization, don’t forget to include those on your profile as well. If you spend your free time volunteering, there’s a place for you to showcase that work on your LinkedIn profile. To edit your profile to include these three items, simply hoover over the “Profile” tab on your LinkedIn page and click “Edit.” Once you have arrived on your edit screen scroll to below your profile picture and LinkedIn will prompt you to fill out all the sections you can including, test scores, honors and awards, patents and more! By filling out these sections you truly SHOW your passion for the industry and your hard work to the hiring managers instead of using dull and overused buzzwords.

Showcase for showbiz

Ever heard the saying, actions speak louder than words? Keep this saying in mind when you are trying to describe your experience. It’s easy to say that you creatively helped solve problems at your oil and gas HR job. What does that mean? How?! Refer back to that word document you wrote up earlier mapping out your success stories. The best way to showcase your creativity is telling specific stories describing your work history and experience on LinkedIn. Point to a specific project you worked on and describe exactly what you did to help. If you want to showcase your responsibility, point to a time where you went above and beyond to complete a task or assignment.  Did you create a new file system that made the accounting work move faster? Did you help the CEO rebook a flight to Houston saving the company money? In describing instances where your attributes shine through, you have no need to utilize buzzwords that basically say nothing about you and your experience.  Paint a picture of how your strategy, creativity, ingenuity, responsibility solved a problem. Always think of the how and why!

You are an expert, here’s how you show it!

Before you bust out a thesaurus to try and wiggle around the buzzwords, keep in mind that LinkedIn is a powerful tool and when used right can work for you. Once you have fully filled out your profile, asked for recommendations and included any material that points to your dedication to the industry, all you have to do now to showcase your expertise is upload any and all presentations, papers, PowerPoints and articles you have written in the provided sections on LinkedIn. It might not seem worth it to spend the extra time to do this, but uploading all the projects you’re proud of will truly build a full professional portfolio online.

Filling out your LinkedIn profile can be a little time consuming. Putting all that time and effort will be wasted if you fill your profile up with useless buzzwords. Remember, tell a story about how you were____ (enter buzzword here.) Once completed, your profile will find you a job online in no time!