The unexpected top six skills to add to your LinkedIn profile

By Kaci Diane Palmore | Aug 8, 2022

Kaci Diane Palmore is a poet, editor, and copywriter. She has written several books and enjoys helping her clients tell their stories and educate their customers. She can be found at KaciDiane.com

You might have noticed that LinkedIn isn’t your average social media platform. While other apps are about connecting with old friends and enjoying funny memes, LinkedIn is for networking with individuals who can contribute to your career. On this platform, you can meet like-minded professionals and gain the attention of recruiters and potential employers.

But to use LinkedIn to its full potential, you need to understand its uniqueness, including tools and features. One of those is the skills & endorsement section.

Why top skills are an indispensable part of your profile

LinkedIn is essentially a database that recruiters and hiring managers use to find people whose skills match their needs. Within that database, your profile acts as your resume. Most recruiters use LinkedIn, but your LinkedIn profile also feeds through to Google, providing an additional channel for you to be discovered.

To understand the recruiting process, you need to know that recruiters search for candidates using keywords that pertain to the specific capabilities required for the job. When seeking a position, your goal is to consistently appear in the list of candidates pulled when recruiters search for your qualifications. Ranking well in LinkedIn’s search algorithm is doable but takes concentrated effort. 

A direct strategy for attracting the attention of hiring managers is to make the most of your profile’s skills and endorsement section. There, you can highlight your top skills. Others can also endorse these skills—a quick recommendation of sorts. These features enable employers, recruiters and hiring managers to identify your strengths within seconds. So you see, a LinkedIn profile listing highly relevant skills is imperative, as it significantly increases your probability of being contacted about job opportunities. 

Six highly sought-after skills  

Many employable skills depend on your industry, but employers universally desire many of the same ones. Soft skills, often referred to as people skills, are now sought after in most professions. Hard skills tend to be more occupation-specific but can be utilized across any industry. 

While there are many desirable skills, some almost always make it to the top of a recruiter’s list:

1. Creativity

The ability to develop innovative solutions is an asset in every industry. Creative thinking can show up in problem-solving, lateral thinking and open-mindedness. It strengthens an organization’s adaptability in an ever-changing environment, empowering them to maximize opportunities and overcome challenges. Ultimately, creativity sustains organizations and allows them to survive and thrive. 

2. Collaboration

Today’s workplace is more collaborative than ever and has a much steeper learning curve. Remote and hybrid work have introduced numerous tools that can make working together easier—if the team properly utilizes those tools. Interpersonal skills, often needed to collaborate with people at various levels of expertise, are a must-have, making them worthy of being in your LinkedIn Profile. 

3. Emotional Intelligence

Despite the automation rate and the increasing number of people working remotely, understanding human emotions is a skill that will always be useful. It is a fundamental part of communicating with colleagues and clients. Empathy, active listening, conflict resolution and resilience are all skills that allow you to manage your emotions and effectively interact with others. 

4. Business

Business skills are essential for executives and managers to help a company run smoothly. That said, several important skills related to running a business are beneficial regardless of rank. Employees who possess administrative abilities, comprehend the organization’s business management style and understand how their role fits into the company’s overall economics are highly sought-after.  

5. Communication

Communication is critical for any job. Employees must be able to effectively share ideas with clients, colleagues and employers. Clearly conveying your message is a valuable skill, whether you are communicating internally to colleagues or externally to your customers. Active listening is an additional component of good communication. Knowing what is relevant to your audience is vital to guiding what you share. 

6. Management 

Anyone in a leadership role needs a certain level of expertise in management. It is an essential competency for leaders in all industries. Employers like to see a few management skills: bringing out the best in others, delegating tasks and managing relationships. These are skills that professionals looking for a leadership position must possess. 

Three steps for picking the best skills for your LinkedIn profile

Knowing the highly sought-after skills is only half the battle. So don’t jump on LinkedIn to update your profile just yet. LinkedIn skills are indeed designed to bring visibility to your profile, but they are only beneficial if the skills are tailored to match the job you seek. To boost your profile’s visibility, follow these three steps: 

Step 1: Open a blank document.

Start by opening a new Word or Google document. Working in a document gives you the freedom to create a living list that you can edit anytime without starting over. 

Step 2: Search for relevant job descriptions.

On your preferred job board, search for your target roles at companies where you would like to work. When sorting through results, filter for companies, industry, pay scale, geography and anything else that is meaningful to you. After finding approximately twenty job descriptions, cross-check whether you have relevant skills.

Step 3: Make your skills stand out.

As you find new positions that pique your interest, add the top skills that match your career objectives to your LinkedIn profile, then update with relevant skills to stay competitive. Boosting the number of skills on your profile can increase your chances of appearing in searches and help you grow profile views. 

Honesty is the best policy, and upskilling is always an option. 

Fake it till you make it isn’t the mantra for LinkedIn. You always want to be honest when adding skills to your profile. If you come across a position you want and your abilities do not match, there are many ways to increase your knowledge and gain the needed expertise. 

LinkedIn Learning, for example, offers a myriad of courses designed to help you advance in your career. It might take a little longer to show off the skills you would like to have, but integrity and authenticity are key to creating an outstanding and professional LinkedIn profile.

What skills are you most proud to highlight on your LinkedIn profile? What are the skills you’d like to add in the future? We can’t wait to hear your thoughts in the comments. 

Photo by ANTONI SHKRABA on Pexels


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