Top 10 Words to Avoid on Your LinkedIn Profile

LinkedIn recently analyzed 187 million user profiles to see which words are most commonly used.

Turns out professionals use many of the same words to describe themselves. Here are the top 10 most overused words and phrases found on LinkedIn profiles:

  1. Creative
  2. Organizational
  3. Effective
  4. Motivated
  5. Extensive experience
  6. Track record
  7. Innovative
  8. Responsible
  9. Analytical
  10. Problem solving

Source: Leslie Kwoh, At Work Blog, WSJ.com

I’ll have you know I checked my LinkedIn profile and found I’ve not used any of these terms. You may want to check your profile, too.

Notice that eight of these 10 terms are adjectives. Only two are nouns: “extensive experience” and “track record.”

I can already imagine how these would appear in a profile…

I have extensive experience in __________ and a track record of results.

Makes me want to barf just typing that out.

If you want to persuade somebody of your skills, better to show them what you’ve done (with real stories, outcomes, awards, etc) than use banal descriptors like “creative.”

There is so much irony in saying you’re creative instead of actually demonstrating it.

Even more irony using the word “analytical” without analyzing LinkedIn profiles to discover millions of other people are saying the same thing.

Words matter.

Choose them carefully.

-Ryan M. Healy

P.S. You’ll find me on LinkedIn at: http://www.linkedin.com/in/rmhealy

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