Creative LinkedIn Profile Summaries to Attract Your Next Boss

Creative LinkedIn Profile Summaries to Attract Your Next Boss
by Kaitlin King
Photos Stephanie Yang | September 04, 2015
Let us let you in on a secret: when it comes to getting noticed by people you want to work for, your LinkedIn profile summary defines your success.
LinkedIn runs on cleverly crafted algorithms designed to point like-minded people to your page. Your work history, word choice, skills, geography, and other components define how the algorithm will respond to your profile. Sure your background is a done deal, but the summary section is your chance to put whatever spin you want on it. Ultimately, your summary defines your potential to future employers. 

Sure your background is a done deal, but the summary section of your LinkedIn profile is your chance to put whatever spin you want on it. 
Most LinkedIn profiles keep it simple, providing a quick summary of work history followed by a bulleted list of specialty skills. This format might work on a one-page paper resume, but not on LinkedIn. 

Your profile is the first chance the outside world gets to meet you. This is best done through first-person storytelling via your LinkedIn summary. Use it to entice your reader, offer insights about your proudest career accomplishments, and let your voice shine through. Not only will this approach hit SEO targets and attract potential employers, it will get them to take action! 

No matter where you are in your journey, you’ll find inspiration from these examples of LinkedIn summaries—straight from the mouths of industry changemakers.

1. IF YOU're planning a career change or your CAREER PATH IS NONLINEAR, EMPHASIZE your unique perspective

The LinkedIn Summary

I’m not your average editor. Of course, I have strong writing skills, geek out over traffic spikes, and proofread my own text messages. But I’m also a project manager, community builder, and team leader (and pretty good party planner, so I’ve been told). My background, while extensive, isn’t traditional....In a nutshell, my passion for content is coupled with a love for big-picture planning and daily operational management. I’m not the editor who just wants to write. I’m the editor who actually wants to edit—and plan, ideate, and lead. This is what I do best and love most. 

- Adrian Granzella Larssen, Editor-in-Chief at The Muse

Why It Works

This a great example if you're writing your LinkedIn summary for a career change. It might seem like a disadvantage that you’ve jumped industries or have a varied background and work history. But, with a simple and clear explanation about how your diverse experience brings value to your work, you’ll attract an even larger LinkedIn audience with all of the variety. 

Granzella Larssen interweaves her impressive accomplishments with honest retrospection about the kind of work she’s done and how that plays into her professional goals for the future. We get a strong sense of her many talents, and the reader is left with a cohesive understanding of her profile.
Get to the root of why you like what you do and communicate its value.

2. IF YOU'RE GOING FOR YOUR LIFELONG DREAM JOB, PLAY UP YOUR PASSION in your LinkedIn summary

The LinkedIn Summary 

“...At the end of my undergraduate degree I did a field study in cultural design in South Africa. In order to have an in-depth conversation with a South African woman I sat next to her in the dirt and cut up a cow for an initiation ceremony while she told me stories of her life. My experience in South Africa had a profound effect on my design and my worldview, teaching me that patience and humility are essential when stepping into another culture. I learned to communicate better cross-culturally and that designers can play a unique role in the need for change.” 

- Shayna Proctor, Design Lead at IDEO

Why It Works 

Shayna walks the reader through often-overlooked experiences that inform her success in her current role. By using sensory-rich anecdotes about her family life and a stint abroad, she paints the picture that her whole life has been building up to her career with IDEO. What hiring manager wouldn’t want this kind of motivated talent?

3. IF YOUR UNIQUE APPROACH HAS DEFINED YOUR BRAND AND SUCCESS, your LinkedIn profile should celebrate IT

The LinkedIn Summary 

“I believe that we, as humans, don't buy "stuff."...We buy when we are moved. We buy when we are captivated and engaged to the point that we drop whatever it is we're doing and say, ‘Oh, heck yes. I need me some of THAT.’ And so I teach people and companies how to create that reaction...” 

- Jenny Foss, Founder of JobJenny.com LLC

Why it Works

Entrepreneurs, consultants, and business leaders take note: your methodology sets you apart from the crowd so you should make it a transparent selling point in your profile. Foss is a sought-after leader in her field with a long list of clients, subscribers, and fans. Her principles and personality created those connections so she lets her voice shine, giving the reader a feel for her personality and clear idea of how she would fit with a company.
Entrepreneurs, consultants, and business leaders take note: your methodology sets you apart from the crowd so you should make it a transparent selling point in your profile.

4. IF YOU ARE WELL-ROUNDED AND CROSS-FUNCTIONAL, EMPHASIZE YOUR ABILITY TO SYNTHESIZE MOVING PARTS AND AFFECT CHANGE

The LinkedIn Summary

“I help companies and organizations hatch new brands, hone and express their existing brands, and on exceptionally good days, create positive change in the world. I lead multi-disciplinary teams of talented designers. Together, we bring brand strategies to life through physical spaces, products, web sites, systems, experiences, apps, communications, and musical numbers (No. Really. I wrote a musical. Ask me about it). As a Design Director, I also do a bunch of other leader/manager stuff: Inspire teams, mentor and coach, hire people who are smarter than me, venture out to speaking engagements, develop new business…you get the drift. I’m at my happiest when I’m creating things that bypass the brain’s radar and go straight to the heart.”

- Jenn Maer, Design Director at IDEO

Why it Works

Ultimately, LinkedIn is a platform to showcase the value you bring to your industry. Jenn does this very well in her LinkedIn profile summary. She doesn’t list her interests, but rather, the sorts of value she brings to her clients’ projects. A future employer can easily understand how Jenn could improve his or her company. This doesn’t mean you can’t talk about personal preferences, but follow Jenn’s example: get to the root of why you like what you do and communicate its value. 

Do you have some other great examples of LinkedIn profiles or LinkedIn summaries? Share them with us in the comments.