What Does Your LinkedIn Profile Photo Say About You?

LinkedIn profile photo

LinkedIn profile photos are something most people often don’t give much thought to; you pop the first good photo you find up and roll with it, much like your Facebook, Instagram or Twitter. Just because some may take the more lax and casual approach doesn’t mean it does not hold a vital significance, particularly when you venture into business networking. Your LinkedIn profile headshot may be the first thing a recruiter, a potential client, or even a potential employer finds when they search for you online.

Your LinkedIn headshot will say a lot about you, so let’s take a closer look:

Vacation Photo – Pina Colada Mostly Cropped Out

Vacation photo

If you are currently sporting a vacation snap, it gives off many signals, but none are good! You are not serious about business networking. We’re all jealous you went away but keep vacation photos for your private accounts and keep the blender drinks away from work-related accounts. The same goes for party pictures or awkward group shots.



Selfies have a time and place, but when used in professional networking, they show you are unprepared, unprofessional and stuck in social mode. Even when done well, selfies are too casual.

A Cellphone Photo of a Business Portrait from the Early 90’s

Bonus point for a visible flash and print paper grain. This type of LinkedIn profile portrait shows you are old school, you probably don’t like change, and are significantly behind the times. It also tells others that you may not give problems the attention they need until it’s too late. Finally, it shows that you still prefer fax as your primary means of communication with clients and customers.

Event Photo from a Business Conference or Convention

Event photo

Is your last profile upload a conference shot? If so, it shows that you are active in your industry, but your message is off-target. Conference photos are best posted on your activity page, not as a feature.

Your Portrait from Graduation, Either High School or Post-Secondary

Graduation photo

This type of profile portrait shows that you are proud of your achievements but may be unprepared for what is next in the workforce.

Muslin Cloth/Sponge Textured Background Portrait

Muslin portrait

This type of portrait also goes hand in hand with overly smoothed retouched skin and some mood lighting. It shows you love the old way of doing things; you may be resistant to taking bold steps and are slow to change.

Blurred Background Professional Portrait

Professional portrait with bokeh

This type of headshot shows that you are innovative and approachable. Your portrait shows you respect convention but are not ridged and will go with the flow. If the portrait is outside against a green space, you give the impression that you are a very positive person. Against a cityscape or office setting, your business portrait shows you are one to tackle challenges head-on.

White Backdrop Corporate Headshot

Corporate headshot against white backdrop

A white background business headshot shows you are conventional, like things clean and simple, and have a direct approach to problems but will not back down from new ways of thinking. Formalities are still well and alive for you, but they create the framework for an efficient way of working.

Colour Backdrop Corporate Headshot

Toronto business portrait against colour backdrop

The brighter the colour, the bolder the personality. Your portrait makes you stand out and shows you like to go above and beyond, but not always in the traditional way. You know how to get others' attention and to make use of it when you have it.

Regardless of your LinkedIn portrait's state, remember that it is important to update regularly to ensure it matches who you are and your goals. If you want to take your profile portrait to the next level, feel free to browse what we can offer. If you don't see what you are looking for, contact us for a customized photography service.