Mark Grimm


Do You Wear a Hood to a Mixer? Why a Photo is Needed on LinkedIn

LinkedIn is the most popular social media site for professionals. It’s about networking to build relationships, gain exposure and attract business. Yet, when you glance over the list of LinkedIn names, it is astonishing to see how many people don’t post their photos.

Are you one of them?

If so, please allow me this straightforward question: Do you wear a hood to a networking mixer? Isn’t LinkedIn an online mixer? The reasons for not posting vary. “I’m a private person,” “I don’t like the way I look,” “I want people to judge me on my credentials,” etc. I understand the emotional aspects of these reservations. But sometimes we have to let our head take over. Ask yourself, when you are browsing, are you more likely to notice a name with a photo or no photo? Exactly, my point.

A photo also helps to identify people who have the same name as a thousand other people (often, the profiles are so skimpy you can’t tell).

Hey, we all have our strengths and weaknesses when it comes to looks. Highlight your strengths, minimize your weaknesses. We live in a visual world. You must have a good photo today in business. Business is about relationships…relationships with people. Put a personal face of who you are. A photo is needed anyway for your website or any other promotional material. Get a good one that reveals your true self. Remember, as Charles Gordy put it, “a smile is an inexpensive way to change your looks.”

You want to be found. A photo helps do that. It helps build trust because you become less mysterious and more human. It shows you are willing to reveal yourself as you ask others to do the same.

So please reconsider. Show us what you got!