My LinkedIn Group, Profile Makeover: Optimization Secrets, had a very interesting discussion take place the other day. One of the members asked, “How do you age proof a LinkedIn profile?”
Here are a few ways an older worker can choose to deal with their age on their LinkedIn profile:
1. Embrace your age and go with it. List your graduation date, talk about having 30 years of experience. List your applicable Experiences, or heck, go all the way back. Post your picture. Own your age!
2. Embrace your age but don’t go back 30 years in your Experiences. List only your last 3, 4 or 5 positions that are applicable to what you do today. Leave off your birth year. Omit your graduation date. Proudly post your studio-taken, photo-shopped profile photo with a big smile.
3. Try to hide it. No picture. List only your last 3 Experiences. Omit your birth year, graduation dates… but at this point, it’s obvious what you are hiding.
It’s worth noting that there are some recruiters out there that won’t look at a profile in which the dates are omitted. You have to determine what route makes sense for you. There are certain industries and positions in which age is a benefit. If you are not in an industry or position in which your age is a bonus, whatever you do, don’t ignore your LinkedIn profile! LinkedIn is an amazing tool that will help you find a job… if you use it. Just because age discrimination takes place, it doesn’t mean every company is discriminating. Use LinkedIn to network with your connections to find positions in companies that are open to hiring the right employees regardless of their years on earth. Leverage your profile and cast yourself as an expert that businesses need.
And if you do decide to take option 3, you can’t hide it forever. Your age will eventually get out. Do you want to hide who you are and end up wasting your time heading down a dead end? Only you can decide which is option is best for you. I wish you luck in whatever path you choose. And if you have any other additional ideas regarding age proofing a LinkedIn profile, please comment or join our group and chime in!
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