Profile Photos

Linkedin is recognized as the number 1, professional networking site with over 100 million users. Most professionals create extensive profiles embracing the opportunity to share details of their career history including achievements, goals, testimonials and a profile photo. Linkedin is also an exceptional social media venue for discussions and it is the response to the following comment that has prompted today’s post on profile photos.

Martin Buckland “This is so funny! A Recruiter said to me today if a profile is missing a picture I know you’re old! So why not broadcast how young you are.”

The majority of those responding did not find it funny and just to be clear,  the reference to a profile photo or picture,  is solely related to online profiles and not resumes! It was evident that the point was missed by many but it was certainly clear to one professional who agreed to allow us to post his comment here:

Phil Drash, MBA “Interestingly, all comments so far consistently abhor that many judge a book by its cover, or lack thereof. While it IS terrible that people rush to judgment on little info and that discrimination (ageism, etc.) exist, these are facts of life. Ours is a visual society that processes visual cues instantaneously – the basis of many 1st impressions (i.e.; Malcolm Gladwell’s Blink). Stats quoted by online dating sites indicate that those with pics receive SIGNIFICANTLY more attention vs. those that don’t. While not GQ material myself, why be perceived as having something to hide and increase the odds of being dismissed in a job market that BEGS for reasons to exclude anybody for any reason?!”

Phil later followed up with another comment, equally as appropriate and as intuitive:

“Yes, we job seekers are an (over-) sensitive bunch these days. It is easy to lose the forest for the trees and fixate on how things “should” be versus how they are.”

If not fully understood from these comments, ask yourself the following questions: If you attended a professional networking meeting and some of the attendees wore bags over their heads and some didn’t, who would you be more likely to network with? If some wore name tags with proper names and others chose to use an alias or a nickname, as a professional, managing an executive career, who would you rather network with? Or, are you wearing a bag over your head because you think it will “protect you from discrimination”?

If you want to appear professional and manage a successful executive career, don’t look like this:

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Contributors to this blog post:

DSC 0025Barbara MackiePhil Drash


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