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Shatakshi Sharma, St Stephens College, University of Delhi Graduate, ISB MBA, strategist to government of India, former BCG management consultant, advisor to tony blair institute, ivy league exchange student, LinkedIn Top Voice and co-founder of Global Governance Initiative

Career Insights by GGI is a new series by GGI sharing hacks and tips around management consulting, MBA, product management and public policy.

In this GGI career insight, we will be sharing insights into: the hacks of fully utilising LinkedIn to get your new job.


Are you looking to advance your career? Do you want to know tips and tricks to get maximum value out of LinkedIn?

This is a very relevant topic in the twenty-first century.

I have been fortunate in gaining value from this platform in not only getting dream job opportunities, but also becoming a LinkedIn top voice and advancing my education venture.

1. Building your profile

1.1 Profile Optimisation

Your profile picture is extremely important. Many people make the mistake of taking this lightly.

People tend to put pictures that are not professional or don’t clearly show their faces.

If you realise that you have been making a similar mistake, then I highly suggest you to get a good profile photo clicked. It will have extra-ordinary return on investments.

As an entrepreneur, I don’t trust people whose profiles don’t have a picture when I am hiring. It is not even possible to know whether the profile is fake or genuine.

1.2 Cover Photo

If you have skill or expertise in, for example, data analytics and artificial intelligence- you can mention it here.

This will suddenly capture the attention of someone who is looking at your profile from a hiring perspective.

1.3 Featured

This is a highly underutilised feature.

Here, you can share any awards and accolades that you have received in the past.

When someone is looking at your profile, they go from top to bottom and this is a great way to stand out at the very beginning.

1.4 About Section

I have used this space to share that I am a businesswoman, a former management consultant, a public policy advisor and a global advocate for young girls.

I have also shared information about my education venture and the awards that I have received in the past.

I know you might not have similar things to show for at the beginning of your career. Instead, you can share your good GPAs and internships.

Put your best foot front on the top of your profile.

1.5 Experience Section

Don’t just put the name of your organisation and your designation.

Talk about it as well. Share the thought leadership work that you have done in these organisations.

1.6 Skills

It is of great essence to get endorsements on your skills from your network. It could be your friends in college or your boss.

1.7 Recommendations

This will help you stand out.

When people are looking at your profile, they will realise that you are the topmost cream of whatever institution you are a part of.

1.8 The top sentence

Do not write artistic sentences.

Write sentences that are searchable on LinkedIn.

These keywords will put your profile at the forefront when employers are looking to hire people in your category.

2. Secret hack for job search

Many organisations actually do not even publish job opportunities. In addition to this, many of the jobs on LinkedIn are outdated as they have already been closed.

Instead, start following companies you want to work for on LinkedIn so that you’re first to be notified when they are hiring.

3. Getting a referral

There are certain good practices of getting a referral and there are certain bad practices.

If you are going to write a five-paragraph message with a sob story, nobody will empathise with you.


Because everyone at a credible level gets hundreds of messages like that so there is no differentiation.

Your message should be personalised, researched and backed with a good cover letter. You should also mention how will you help the organisation.

If you start helping someone even before getting a stipend, they will start valuing you.

4. Hashtags

You should look out for relevant hashtags.

For example, #hiring. Whenever I have hired through LinkedIn, I’ve had those relevant keywords in my posts.

Another thing to keep in mind is that your probability of getting a referral from a hiring manager is higher than that from an HR.

5. Having thought leadership

Write about things that you’re passionate about.

Don’t just share opinions. Instead, share opinions backed by data and experiences.

You might feel that you’re just a 19-year-old intern who can’t add value. But, I had this 19-year-old GGI Impact Fellow who shares beautiful stories and has received a lot of traction because of it.

In fact, I got my last job because the hiring manager came across one of my posts as my friend who had worked there had liked it.

6. Secret hack to land your next job

I see many people using the green circle on their profiles which indicates they are looking for employment.

Now it comes down to economic signalling.

I got a covetous job from Tony Blair Institute when I was not even looking for it.

It is a lot like dating.

You become a more desirable candidate when you are not making it obvious that you are in need of that job.

I know this is a sensitive topic and it may go either way. But, I genuinely believe that from an economic signalling point of view, you are not doing a good job.

If you need more help getting into management consulting and product management, feel free to check out my education venture- Global Governance Initiative. We invite industry leaders to host Masterclasses and teach our students the hard and soft skills required to excel in their careers.


Author: Shatakshi Sharma, Co-CEO Global Governance Initiative, Ex-BCG Management Consultant, Former Policy Advisor, Tony Blair Institute for Global Change

If you are interested in learning about GGI's MBA Scholar program, you can learn here.

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