30 LinkedIn Profile Tips 26/30 – Use the past tense

30 short, useful, actionable LinkedIn tips in 30 days from Doctor LinkedIn™, David Petherick. #30×30

#26/30: Use the past tense. Your previous experience is not your current experience.

In 1995 I co-founded NewsBase, born out of another parent company, Russian Communications, which I founded with three partners in 1993.

21 years later, NewsBase is a major source of business intelligence for the energy and oil…

But hold on. Enough about that.

If you look at my profile, you’ll see how I describe my past experience.

I describe it in the past tense.

But when I look at LinkedIn Profiles, I see, over and over again, how past experience has been written in the present tense (when presumably it was current) but has never been updated.

For a position you left three years ago, you’re saying “My role includes…”

So it sounds like you’re still stuck in a past role. And you’re not. But it looks to the outside world that you are.

Which is not what a customer or a recruiter wants to see. You look forgetful, at best, or worse, disorganised and living in the past.

So when you move on to another new role, and leave one behind, spend two minutes putting the present into the past. “My role included…”

Sort it out now. That’s all.