Writing prompts for Tech Leaders | Creating Value, Visibility, and Authority on LinkedIn

Everyone likes a good story, whether it’s about a personal adventure, a crisis averted, or a how-to article. Well-written articles not only entertain, but they offer ideas and insights for others to learn from.

My favorite LinkedIn posts happen to be just such articles: short, engaging, real-world bursts of information that offer a new perspective, a glimpse of someone else’s world. Call me a tiny bit voyeuristic, but if the success of reality TV is any indication, I’m not alone.

For tech leaders who want to become more visible on LinkedIn but who are stumped about where to begin, here are some writing prompts.


Begin with your specific area of expertise. Is it software development leadership? Corporate technology and systems? Connecting a global technology organization infrastructure? Defending an organization’s perimeter? Keep to this playing field, for consistency’s sake.

Think of a specific episode within this playing field. Without breaking confidentiality, tell your story.

If you’re not used to writing, it will feel sludgy at first. Use ChatGPT or another AI tool to get started, then customize to make it your own.

Here are some writing prompts:

  • How we transformed our technology organization from waterfall to Agile.
  • How we built a pipeline of new grads into a pool of promotable engineers.
  • How we went about choosing (pick one) a particular provider, platform technology, etc.
  • Lessons learned in implementing xyz.
  • How we groom top individual contributors for leadership roles.
  • How we partnered with Talent Acquisition to ramp up our hiring (and get the right candidates)
  • How we learned to communicate effectively with our business partners.
  • What it’s like to lead a team of engineers in a (name your space) environment: pros/cons/what works well.
  • We learned from our mistakes in choosing the wrong (insert language, ERP system, tool, unnamed vendor here)

You get the picture. And I bet you have lots more.

Here are some guidelines:

Keep it fairly high level (i.e. not too long or detailed). It should contain some color (it’s okay to share missteps), and offer some insights.

Keep it relevant to the qualities of your own professional brand. You should highlight your domain of knowledge, industry, leadership style and/or values.

What you’ll find is that by telling (and humanizing) stories, connecting with others will become easier. When you write and post regularly, it gets easier. We get to know you a little. You also become more visible, and who knows where that will lead: speaking engagements? Collaboration? A new role?

When I started writing blog posts and posting on LinkedIn, it was terrifying. I felt like I was onstage, no clothes. Out there for the world to see (and make fun of). In hindsight, it’s pretty funny. It gets easier, so I’m glad I kept going. We all have stories and insights  – why not share yours with us (and reap some benefits in the process)?


Using my recruiting experience, I help technology leaders better-define their professional brand and navigate their job search. Want to know more about my signature Professional Branding Package? Click here.

Not sure yet, or you’ve got questions?  Use this link to schedule a FREE, no-strings intro call.


Copyright Katherine Turpin 2024. All rights reserved.

The Resume is Dead | Long Live the Multidimensional You

“THE RESUME IS DEAD!”: a startling recent statement for those in the business of recruiting or job-hunting. Resumes offer a structured and standardized way for employers to review candidates quickly, so how could they be…dead?

Insider note: the resume is NOT dead. However, the job search and recruiting landscapes are changing quickly, so take heed, my friend.

What IS dying? Traditional (read: functional, listing responsibilities and duties) resumes. They’re not dimensional enough to capture your full range of skills, experiences, and potential contributions.

Think of your resume as one of several touchpoints in the universe of you, including:

  1. Your digital presence. 0nline platforms, notably LinkedIn (but also personal websites and professional social media profiles) give you the ability to showcase your professional identity (think 3D vs flat file).

  2. Your skills-based resume. Companies are increasingly focusing on specific skills and competencies. Rather than listing formal qualifications and job titles, use a skills-based resume (ie. problem + solution you implemented = results you/your team(s) achieved)
    It’s not only what you know, but how you use what you know.

  3. Your soft skills. In our rapidly-changing world, soft skills like communication, collaboration and adaptability are exponentially important. Traditional resumes fall short in capturing them. Here’s where you can showcase those: ask for LinkedIn recommendations from those who have benefited from your great soft skills. Referrals, too, can be essential in helping a prospective employer understand and appreciate the qualities you possess.

  4. Your network. Your fanbase, meaning those who’ve worked alongside, with, or for you. Invaluable in bird-dogging new opportunities and raving about you and your accomplishments, your network is perhaps your most-valuable professional resource.

  5. Your professional brand. You know who you are, what you’ve accomplished, what you’re capable of. You’re a lighthouse, not afraid to niche down or to not be all things to all people. You’re authentic and it shows. Big time.

While some are suggesting a shift away from the resume, it’s critical to understand that resumes still play a key role in the hiring process. I’ve seen referred candidates get interviewed before that candidate has submitted a resume or applied to a job. But somewhere along the way, a resume is always required, I promise.

Ultimately, the resume is still a cornerstone of a job search. These days, it’s enlivened with your skills and accomplishments, and enhanced by your online presence.

Struggling to capture your skills and accomplishments on a few sheets of paper? Using my recruiting experience, I help technology leaders better-define their professional brand.

Want to know more about my signature Professional Brand Package? Click here.
Not sure yet, or got questions? Use this link to schedule a FREE, no-strings intro call.

Copyright Katherine Turpin 2024. All Rights Reserved.

Creating Your Professional Story | Eight Points to Get You There


Humans love stories – they’re as old as time. And being able to articulate your own professional story is a powerful tool in your career development. Most importantly: being able to effectively tell your story will help you stand out.

A professional story is versatile: use it in a job interview, a presentation, a training session, or even as you pitch an idea.

Here are some key considerations when crafting your own professional story:

1. Tailor your story to your audience.  What are they interested in? What are their expectations or values? Make sure your story is relevant to the context of the conversation.

2. Have a captivating introduction. Open with a thought-provoking fact, an interesting question, or a short and relevant story. Grab their attention at the starting gate.

3. Structure it: have a clear beginning, middle, and end.

In a job interview, this could be as follows: describe (in a captivating way) a problem that needed to be solved + why it needed solving. Add your involvement in finding and delivering a solution, including details to show impact (like costs before and after solving, time to delivery, issues or struggles you faced) and wrap up with a quick “new state / happy outcome”. You get the idea.

4. Use metrics to showcase your impacts and accomplishments and add credibility.

5. Be authentic. This helps your relatability. Share struggles, missteps, and learning moments. They’ll like you for it.

7. Incorporate the audience’s questions. When you respond to their questions within your story, it becomes more real and engaging to them (and shows your capacity for emotional intelligence).

8. Be concise. You don’t want to be remembered as someone who rambled on and on. Watch your audience’s body language and if they seem distracted, be able to shift gears.

By weaving these elements into your professional storytelling, you’ll stand out as someone who can communicate effectively and leave a memorable impression. A professional story that’s tailored, relatable, and credible is a powerful professional tool.

Using my recruiting experience, I help tech leaders better-tell their professional stories.
Want to see if my services are a match for your needs? Click here to schedule a FREE, no-strings intro call.



Copyright Katherine Turpin 2024. All Rights Reserved.

How to DIY Your Professional Brand | Part 1 of 2



Nike is one of the world’s most iconic brands. It says, “Our mission: Bring inspiration and innovation to every athlete* in the world. *If you have a body, you are an athlete”.

Its mission says nothing about its products. Isn’t that interesting?

Nike has clarified and distilled athletic apparel into an inclusive RESULT: inspiration to every athlete. You, too, can begin with the end in mind, a RESULT, based on your unique combination of experience, perspective, and interests.

Before creating or updating your resume or adding to your LinkedIn profile, take time to self-reflect. Dialing in on what you like to do, what you’re good (or experienced) at, and what the marketplace will pay you for is important.

In this first step, you’ll be gathering evidence. So… assemble the following and plan on taking 30-60 minutes:

1.  Your resume

2.  Performance reviews for the past 3-5 years

3.  LinkedIn recommendations people have given you

4.  A list of extracurricular or passion projects you’ve completed in the past 3-5 years

5.  Something to write with/on

Start by reviewing your resume: in each of your roles over the past 10 years, note the biggest contributions you’ve made. Did you reduce costs? Increase employee morale? Come up with an innovative solution to a persistent problem? Jot these RESULTS down.

Then, take a look at your performance reviews. What did your reviewer say about your skills / performance? That you’re unstoppable? Are you extremely reliable? You finish your work ahead of time and then look for someone else to help? Again, make notes.

Do the same with your LinkedIn recommendations. You should be getting a good snapshot of how others view you and your skills. 

What have you worked on outside of your day job? If you’re a software engineer, did you write a program or an app  for fun? Did you take classes or learn a new skill? Write a blog? Have a YouTube channel or side hustle? Again, make note. 

Once you’ve gathered this data, think about the activities you’ve enjoyed most, things you’d like to keep doing. As you flesh out your resume and LinkedIn profile, keep those in mind. If you’ve managed teams successfully but don’t care to do it again, downplay that experience.

If you don’t have performance reviews or LinkedIn recommendations, ask co-workers and/or managers who know your work well. Ask them what stands out, what they think your most-valuable skills are, what they’d consider a memorable accomplishment.

When I was recruiting for Robert Half Technology, we were required to talk with candidate references at the beginning of their job search. Why? Because references would brag about the candidates, often remembering accomplishments that the candidate had completely  forgotten. Take advantage of this gold mine!

What if you’ve done none of these things? It’s been challenging enough just to show up for your job. You could look for team accomplishments, or perhaps company accomplishments, like doubling in size in the past year. Or, if there’s something you’ve been wanting to do, take steps now to bring it into reality. Take online classes from MITx (they’re free). Start a newsletter, begin that nonprofit, mentor someone, teach what you know, travel to far flung places you’ve dreamed of visiting. Be or become a person of interest(s).

In Part 2, we’ll take the data you’ve gathered and start crafting your brand statement.

Still overwhelmed and not wanting to do this alone? I work 1:1 with tech leaders to help them create or refine their professional brand.
Click here to book a FREE, no-strings intro session and see if we’re a match.

Copyright Katherine Turpin 2024. All Rights Reserved.

6 Great Reasons for Having a Professional Brand

A common problem of mid-career tech leaders (10+ years in) is, “how do I fit all my experience on a few pages?” There is a tendency to put EVERYTHING into their resume and by default, their LinkedIn profile. From a recruiter’s perspective, this leads to confusion about what the person is actually best at, not to mention what they really like doing.

Here’s an example from my own career: for several years while at Robert Half International. I led a team of recruiters. I was good at it and our team was in the top 10% of the company for two years in a row. But I really, really did not enjoy the work. I’ve been a leader in many jobs, but I’m not the least bit interested in doing it ever again. So I downplay it or even leave it off altogether.

A professional brand is created by getting very clear about your professional strengths, your key contributions, and what you like doing.

Knowing what kinds of environments you thrive in, what leadership style fosters your best work, and what kind of work/life balance you need for peak productivity is important. Also – a well-defined professional brand is alive and evolving – what you like today might not make the cut later.

Here are six great reasons for creating your professional brand:

1. A clear professional brand helps you decide which qualities and experiences you’ll highlight on your resume and LinkedIn profile. You’ll be able to articulate accomplishments and weave in those experiences – both personal and professional – that make you stand out.

2. A clear professional brand makes job hunting much easier. It gives guidance as you review new roles. When looking for a new position, this clarity will help you vet opportunities.  If you know you work best in an entrepreneurial setting, you may choose not to work for a change-averse, highly bureaucratic company. 

3. A clear professional brand makes interviewing easier. It provides a framework for interviewing.  It offers coherence. With the clarity that comes from introspection, your confidence will also improve.

4. A clear professional brand helps your audience (hiring managers, prospective clients and decision-makers) better-understand the value you bring. You stand out, because you’ve taken time to self-reflect.

5. A clear professional brand makes networking easier. Once you’ve defined your professional brand, the pressure is off when people ask, “So….what do you do?” or “What kind of job are you looking for?” It’s a mini-elevator pitch, a sound bite that gives instant context. 

6. A clear professional brand can benefit your digital presence. When you take the time to honestly evaluate your skills, your preferences, and your perspectives, you’ll direct your social media posts and articles accordingly – what values do you hold dear? What lessons will you talk about?

You don’t need a logo or a mission statement to have a clear professional brand. What you DO need is self-knowledge and the ability to articulate what you bring to the marketplace, whether it’s  a new job, a promotion in your current company, or as a speaker in your industry.

A professional brand offers clarity. And your clarity will be a huge asset.

I work 1:1 with technology leaders who need help better-defining their professional brand.
Want to see if we’re a fit? 
Use this link to schedule a 15-minute no-strings FREE intro call!



Copyright Katherine Turpin 2024. All Rights Reserved.