When my parents constantly drove home the importance of being responsible as a child, I couldn’t imagine that the word would one day take on a diluted meaning. That’s what LinkedIn is saying today, as it released its “most overused buzzwords on LinkedIn profiles in 2013”, both globally and for Canadians.
Being responsible, said the world’s largest professional network with more than 259 million members, is overrated.
Below is the entire 2013 list of the top 10 words that appear most often in the profiles of Canadian professionals:
This is the fourth year that LinkedIn has released its annual list of overused buzzwords. Looking back at the past few years, a variety of buzzwords have risen and fallen in terms of their popularity. In 2010, “extensive experience” was the top buzzword worldwide and in Canada, and for two years running in 2011 and 2012 the top global and national buzzword was “creative.”
“Building your professional brand is an important step to being successful in the workforce,” said Nicole Williams, LinkedIn’s career expert. “But if you sound like everyone else, you won’t stand out from other professionals vying for opportunities. Differentiate yourself by uniquely describing what you have accomplished in your career and back it up with concrete examples of your work by adding photos, videos and presentations to your profile that demonstrate your best work. Providing concrete examples to demonstrate how you are responsible or strategic is always better than just simply using the words.”
In clever fashion, LinkedIn suggested that instead of telling people that you’re responsible and creative, let other LinkedIn members endorse you (use the site more!). “Another way of verifying the skill sets that the majority of others are also touting is to seek out endorsements or recommendations from reputable sources. When you are seeking recommendations, ask your connection to speak specifically to the skill set you are looking to emphasize and ideally tie it to an outcome they witnessed,” wrote LinkedIn.