LinkedIn headshot difference is stunning


I had a delightful client this week. John is a talented, experienced senior executive who is known for his passion and loyalty to both customers and colleagues, his ability to drive sustainable growth, lead businesses through start-up, joint venture, integration, and much, much more. When I spoke with John on the phone, it was evident that he is an approachable and articulate leader. Anne Pryor, of Meaningful Connections, is John’s LinkedIn consultant and referred him to me for an updated professional portrait.

While talking with John, I did what I usually do–I went out to his LinkedIn profile, and I was greeted with the “before” picture you see below. Wow! I couldn’t wait to get John in front of my camera for so many reasons! It was evident from talking with him that this picture couldn’t possibly being doing him justice.

KeliComm LinkedIn after headshot

What’s wrong with the “before” image?

  • The background is dark and unflattering and looks strikingly like a DMV backdrop.
  • John’s executive persona is clearly “buttoned up.” This image doesn’t come close to reflecting his track record as a seasoned international corporate executive.
  • While business casual sometimes makes sense for a LinkedIn profile portrait, this doesn’t look like it was intentional.
  • John’s posture in this image doesn’t exude the confidence and persona of an executive.
  • The lighting is dark, almost sinister looking. Here are a few examples of good executive headshots for men.
  • The image is poorly cropped — we see too much blue space above John’s head, which is wasting good real estate. Here are more thoughts about cropping.

Now, in looking at John’s before and after portraits, which executive are you likely to interview and/or want to work with—or for?

My goal is to make my clients look their best and am deeply rewarded when I can give them a professional portrait that truly reflects their qualities, character and genuine personality. It’s not that often when the difference is this striking, so I really wanted to share this example. If you browse LinkedIn, you might actually be surprised to see quite a few LinkedIn profile pictures that aren’t too far off from John’s “before” picture. If your photo has any of these attributes, do yourself a favor and schedule a professional headshot today. It really can make the difference in getting that interview and/or developing your business!

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