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Your LinkedIn profile photo might be the first thing a prospective employer sees. Here’s an easy way to make it great

What’s a prospective employer’s first impression of you when they click through to your LinkedIn profile?

Go ahead – try it and see.

The first thing they see if your smiling face, followed by your name and your current title.

And while in an ideal world hiring managers would make hiring decisions on a purely rational basis, in the real world, all sorts of things impact the decision about whether or not to interview a candidate like you.

And research shows that our brains make judgements about people in as little as 30 milliseconds. According to one study in the Journal of Neuroscience,

The brain immediately determines how trustworthy a face is before it’s fully perceived . . . The researchers focused on activity in the amygdala, a part of the brain responsible for social and emotional behavior, and found that specific areas of the amygdala were activated based on [very quick] judgments of trustworthiness or non-trustworthiness.

So what does your LinkedIn photo say to prospective employers about you?

And what can you do if you think your profile image is giving the wrong impression about you?

LinkedIn has a new answer to this last question. They announced recently that LinkedIn has introduced six new photo filters, along with the ability for users to crop photos and adjust lighting by editing brightness, contrast, saturation and vignette for your profile shot.

Linkedin’s Anwesha Jalan wrote:

Not only does your profile photo help you get recognized on LinkedIn, it can often help you connect to opportunity, whether that’s a new job or an invitation to speak at an industry event. Simply having a profile photo results in up to 21 times more profile views and nine times more connection requests.

While your photo is an important piece to getting you noticed, that doesn’t mean you need to hire a professional photographer. In fact, you probably already have a photo that can work perfectly for your LinkedIn profile.

To give you a quick and easy way to enhance your existing photos—yes, even a selfie or group photo—we’ve added photo editing in our mobile app. There are now six photo filters available, and you can also crop and edit the brightness, contrast, saturation and vignette of your LinkedIn profile photo.

You can have a go at at editing your profile shot with the new tools by clicking the pen icon here.

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