You may be like me. When I first started using LinkedIn in 2006, I developed a profile without really knowing what I was doing. On several occasions I made some minor changes to it. In most cases, that tweaking was the result of changes that I knew needed to be made. In some cases, the change derived from some little "thing" that I noticed was not quite right.
However, about a week ago I performed an audit -- a complete content audit of my profile. I went through everything on my LinkedIn profile, and I was amazed to find a remarkable number of sections that I wanted to change.
Sure, some of this audit included the basics. I proofread every section for mistakes in spelling, punctuation, and such. But parts of the profile simply hadn't been completed at all. Areas of description were sometimes far too long, and didn't say anything that I really wanted to say. Some of the organizations that were listed were ones with which I was no longer associated, and others needed to be added or revised.
However, some of the other changes were far more subtle and significantly more important. I needed to completely rewrite my "Summary". Parts of it were too long, and parts completely irrelevant. But as with all writing, and editing, I had to be ruthless -- I had to be willing to let go of all the words I had written before.
I also learned the value of doing this for others with whom I was connecting. The lesson was learned in an odd way. I sent a message to a new LinkedIn connection about some information on their profile. She wrote back and said "Thanks for reaching out. I think I may need to rewrite my paragraph, I actually do not do any type of event planning!" (And yes, that rewriting was done. Nice job by the way.)
Remember, your profile is your face to the rest of the LinkedIn community. As you do your own profile assessment, think about what you want to accomplish with your presence on LinkedIn. What are your goals? Your profile should reflect those goals and advance them. (And if you don't have any goals, then get off of LinkedIn and don't waste your time.)
So, is my profile perfect now? No way. I mean, I like it. But I'm not enough of an egoist to think it is perfect, and too much of a writer to not be tempted to make further rewrites. However, going to leave it alone for now. I'll come back in another three months and do an additional audit. It's now on my calendar as a quarterly task.
Start this new habit now for yourself. Go in and look at everything on your profile. You may be completely satisfied with what you see. Or you may discover much to change. Whichever the case, it is a good practice leading in to this new year.