How to make the perfect LinkedIn profile

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There are more than 15 million active job listings on LinkedIn, but career experts say merely having a profile on the online networking site isn’t enough.

Even if you’re not looking for a new job, it’s important to have a polished profile, says Lisa Rangel, owner of Chameleon Resumes, an executive job-search consultancy that specializes in upgrading resumes and LinkedIn profiles.

“You want to be found for what you do,” she says. “In most searches, LinkedIn ranks even higher than someone’s personal Web site. And it’s a negative if someone puts your name into LinkedIn and nothing comes up, or if the profile’s anemic.”

Plus, by promoting yourself, you subliminally signal that you’re confident in what you do. When your potential employer notices that you’re proud of your accomplishments and sharing them, it increases your value.

“Your LinkedIn profile is often the first professional impression you make, and small updates can help you strengthen your professional community,” says LinkedIn’s resident career expert, Blair Decembrele. “A strong, regularly updated profile can be your ticket to a variety of professional opportunities, from jobs and mentors to new business and volunteering.”

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