Why You Need A Professional Headshot (& How To Take One)

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Whether you're a veteran girlboss or a recent college grad, you NEED a professional headshot. Not convinced? Here are reasons why headshots are major key!

Are you a cool career-oriented woman who plans to climb the corporate ladder or shoot her startup to success? If you answered yes, then you need a professional headshot. If you’re thinking headshots are for actresses, models and beauty pageant contestants, think again. We don’t mean a glamorous brooding headshot designed to catch the attention of directors and designers, but a professional one that helps you put your best foot forward.

To clarify, by professional headshot is meant to make you look like the sophisticated professional you are. You don’t have to have it taken professionally, but it never hurts to hire a superstar photographer. The thought of having a professional headshot may not have crossed your mind before, but trust us, a day will come when you are glad you have one ready to go.

Why You Need One

No matter what industry you are in or what your role is, you need a professional photo to cover a variety of needs. Let’s start with LinkedIn. Adding a photo to your profile makes you 14 times more likely to have your profile viewed on the social network. In fact, if you use any of your social networks in relation to your career, it is best to use an appropriate photo for your profiles. Does your company website have an About Our Team page? Chances are, you will need a photo for that. The same goes for any entrepreneurs with web presences. Do you ever present at conferences or workshops? The organization in charge of the event may want a photo of you for marketing materials. Press releases also benefit from a picture or two. Take a few minutes to think about the professional opportunities that you may encounter and you will be surprised how many may require a photo.

How to Take One

A professional photo needs to look different than any other photo you have probably ever taken. You might think we are being dramatic, but your headshot needs to look intentionally professional. This means that your favorite Instagram photos probably aren’t going to cut it. Don’t get nervous about taking a professional photo. The truth is they are way easier to take than the ones you hope get tons of likes on your favorite social network. Check out our tips for taking the perfect professional headshot and you will be good to go!

How To Get The Perfect Headshot

  1. 1

    Make sure the photo is high-quality. This means good lighting, no blurriness and no graininess. You don’t want your photo to look like it was taken on your phone, even if it was.

  2. 2

    Dress professionally. You may look really cute in your Facebook profile pic, but it won’t cut it for the working world. If you are dressed casually, are wearing heavy makeup or are showing too much skin, you risk the chance of looking unprofessional.

  3. 3

    Keep it simple. Keep your backdrop, outfit, and pose simple. Your photo should be cropped relatively tightly. The main focus should be your face, not your body, which takes a lot of pressure off posing!

  4. 4

    Appear friendly. You don’t have to look like you are having the time of your life, but a friendly smile will go a long way.

If you’re checking out professional headshots, we think you mighttt be on the hunt for a new job. Peep some of our favorite job hunting articles: How To Build A Portfolio With No Experience, 5 Steps To Take Before You Change Your Career Path, & Our 5 Favorite Resume Templates!