A decent selfie is acceptable as a LinkedIn Profile Photo these days

According to LinkedIn, profiles with photos are 14 times more likely to be viewed than those without a profile picture. And, for this reason, your photo settings need to be “Visible to Public”  It’s also a good idea to follow some of the guidance on profile photos.

So, having a photo is really important. Recruiters like to know who they are corresponding with, so make sure your headshot is clear, professional, and only you in the photo.

Consider your sector and the usual dress code for that sector or industry. For example, if you work in the Finance Services Sector then you are most likely going to be very smartly dressed.

“20% of the accounts we reviewed on LinkedIn didn’t have a photo. As I was clicking through the profiles, I found myself often skipping the profiles with no photos and not even clicking to view.”

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Here is some guidance on Profile Photos:

  1. Your aim is to look smart and professional but at the same time be warm, friendly, and approachable. So, smile!
  2. Photos ideally should be professionally done, if possible (but not glamour shots). However, it’s now acceptable to upload a decent selfie.
  3. Don’t use an old photo. It’s uncomfortable meeting someone for the first time and not recognising them because the profile photo is from 10 years ago (or longer).  Just because it’s a nice photo doesn’t make it the right photo for LinkedIn.
  4. Use a photo of YOU in your profile — not an object or a logo. Unless of course, you offer covert services or work in the secret service!
  5. Please don’t use your wedding photo or holiday photos. Again, just because it’s a great photo and you looked good, doesn’t make it right for LinkedIn.
  6. Most people will opt for wearing complementary colours. Be mindful of your sector and if wearing bright colours are the norm, then go for it. Just avoid wearing something too ‘busy’ in the photos.
  7. The photo should be of you and you only. Don’t have other people in your photos (and don’t crop other people out of your shot — there’s always an errant body part in the photo – an arm or shoulder!).
  8. Make sure the background in the photo isn’t distracting. The main focus should be on you.
  9. Take multiple shots and ask people for their opinion on which one makes you seem most “approachable.”
  10. The general advice states that the photo should be a headshot.  Therefore, 70% of the space should be focused on your face.  People like to see the person they are contacting or engaging.  So, no photos with you in the distance.