I’ve been trying to wrap my head around the relatively recent addition to LinkedIN that allows users to ‘LIKE’ the profile picture of others. LinkedIN describes itself as a network of individuals and professionals that make connections and share information, jobs, news, and insights to help organizations broaden their pool of capable applicants and enhance individual’s professional development. With the goal of providing insights and news to job-seekers and connecting them with organizations that might want to hire them, why in the world would they think liking someone’s picture would contribute to this mission? That likens LinkedIN to a social networking site rather than a professional one. LinkedIN is becoming just another Facebook.
If I switch hats and try to view this matter from the eye of a recruiter or business contact, I still can’t see the value of someone with a lot of ‘LIKES’ — unless, there’s an underlying message behind liking pictures. Consider this point. I was just reading a bizarre article suggesting that companies are more likely to pass over someone who is physically attractive. Yes, you read that right. This article, New Study Shows Handsome Men May be at a Disadvantage When it Comes to Hiring, points out how attractiveness may be a hindrance in getting hired. I do not know the study’s methodology or theoretical framework. The study’s authors didn’t detail the approach nor did they try to explain why this phenomenon exists. Is it hogwash? Maybe, maybe not. I decided to so some searches looking for other studies on this topic. While most of the reports I found suggested that attractiveness tends to be an advantage over your experience and education in getting hired, there are several reports with findings indicating just the opposite, such as this one: What to do if you’re too attractive to get hired? Aren’t hiring managers interested in employees who are competent and capable and experienced?
Alas, I digress. Perhaps if you have a large number of ‘Likes’ on your LinkedIN profile picture, that could keep you from getting that new gig.