Short professional bios can be just as effective as long ones that detail your accomplishments. Whether you need to work within Twitter’s character count or you’re making career moves on LinkedIn, a well-written short professional bio gives you the chance to make an excellent first impression. Here’s how to turn this brief text into a powerful introduction to your greatest strengths and accomplishments.
To help you get started, here’s a third-person short professional bio template you can use:
“[Your name] is a [professional title] at [current employer] with [length of experience] helping [target audience] with [audience’s problems]. Specializing in [area of expertise], [first name] uses that experience to [describe most important aspects of the job].
By focusing on [branding statement about what matters professionally], [first name] has been able to put the [degree(s)] they earned at [college or university attended] to good use. Over the years, [first name’s or pronoun] strengths at [employer or project] has garnered some recognition for/by [major accomplishments]. [First name] may spend their days at [employer or employer location], but it’s the [one or two aspects of the job that they’re passionate about] that gets them up in the morning.
When they’re not at [employer], [first name] is an avid [hobby] and loves spending time [another hobby or interest].”
Jerry Smith is a race car driver at Hendrick Motorsports with five years’ experience making speedy turns for several hours, helping his thousands of fans to fulfill their entertainment needs. Specializing in left turns and safely overtaking his opponents in the pursuit of a checkered flag, Jerry uses that expertise to never come in last.
By focusing on making sure Hendrick Motorsports ends up in the winner’s circle at every race, Jerry has been able to put the racing certifications he earned at driver’s school to good use. Over the years, his strengths at Hendrick Motorsports have garnered some recognition for winning several races each year. Jerry may spend his days at the racetrack, but it’s the thrill of the race and the glory of coming in first that gets him up in the morning.
When he’s not behind the wheel, Jerry is an avid fisherman and loves spending time in the great outdoors.
Now that you know how effective a short bio can be, you’re getting closer to putting the proverbial pen to paper and letting the world know more about you. Before you get started on your bio, it’s important that you consider each element you want to mention in it. A correct representation of your professional work experience, especially if it's narrow and global at the same time such as bringing technical innovations to the market, proving new hypotheses in science or just digitization of processes in the healthcare industry may become ace up your sleeve. A good professional bio should include the following bits of information, regardless of your writing style or your goals:
- Start with who you are and what you do. The basics of a bio include your name and a brief summary of your professional endeavors and goals.
- Describe what you’re currently doing. Include quantifiable information that can show how effective you are in your most recent position.
- Share a couple of professional triumphs. If you’ve enjoyed a level of professional excellence that resulted in special recognition, share those results. This is your moment to showcase two or three key moments in your career, such as awards, special recognition, or significant accomplishments. Approach this like you would a cover letter for a job application.
- Create a branding statement. Consider your values as a professional and take some space to outline them. Think of this as an easy way to help people quickly determine what matters to you.
- Include some personal details that showcase your personality. At the end of the day, your career doesn’t completely define you. Feel free to include interests and hobbies in your bio to make you more relatable.
- Mention how to reach you. Add social media links or an email address to your bio. This one is more optional and context-dependent, but a smart idea nonetheless.
With all that in mind, here are the five steps you should take when writing your professional bio:
1. Identify the bio’s purpose and gather information. Good news — if you followed along in the previous section, then you’ve already arrived at this step. Knowing why you’re writing the bio, who you expect to read it, and how you want to present yourself to that reader is important to the bio writing process.
2. Choose either a first- or third-person perspective. Do you want to use first-person “I” and “me” language, or do you want to talk about yourself in the third person? Third person sounds as though someone else wrote your bio for you, giving it an air of objectivity. However, if you’re posting this on your own portfolio page and the rest of your content is written in first person, then you may want to stick with that style for consistency.
3. Write for the platform. Depending on where you’re posting this bio, you may have a short character limit or as much digital real estate as you want. A Twitter bio will naturally be much shorter than your website. Consider writing bios of different lengths to fit each situation.
4. Begin writing. Your bio should contain everything you collected earlier. It should start with a broad overview of who you are and what you do before ultimately diving into your background and what makes you unique. Have fun with it, but remain professional. Be thorough, but don’t overstay your welcome.
5. Proofread, proofread, proofread. Before posting your professional bio online, walk away from the finished product and then return to it with fresh eyes. Reread it and make edits. When you’re good with your edits, share your bio with a friend you trust to look it over. Once this process is complete, your short professional bio is ready for prime time.
While the professional bio template and example provided above can serve as a good starting point for your own bio, it may help to check out some bios from successful individuals in their fields. Here are six excellent examples of what makes a good professional bio.
The bio: Tim Cook is the CEO of Apple and serves on its board of directors.
Before being named CEO in August 2011, Tim was Apple’s chief operating officer and was responsible for all of the company’s worldwide sales and operations, including end-to-end management of Apple’s supply chain, sales activities, and service and support in all markets and countries. He also headed Apple’s Macintosh division and played a key role in the continued development of strategic reseller and supplier relationships, ensuring flexibility in response to an increasingly demanding marketplace.
Prior to joining Apple, Tim was vice president of Corporate Materials for Compaq and was responsible for procuring and managing all of Compaq’s product inventory.
Previous to his work at Compaq, Tim was the chief operating officer of the Reseller Division at Intelligent Electronics.
Tim also spent 12 years with IBM, most recently as director of North American Fulfillment where he led manufacturing and distribution functions for IBM’s Personal Computer Company in North and Latin America.
Tim earned an MBA from Duke University, where he was a Fuqua Scholar, and a Bachelor of Science degree in Industrial Engineering from Auburn University.
Why it’s good: Featured on a corporate about page and focused on one of the most important people in tech, Tim Cook’s professional bio speaks directly to his impressive professional history. This bio is a great example for someone with significant experience in their field.
The bio: Founder of the Virgin Group, which has gone on to grow successful businesses in sectors including mobile telephony, travel and transportation, financial services, leisure and entertainment and health and wellness. Virgin is a leading international investment group and one of the world's most recognised and respected brands. Since starting youth culture magazine “Student” at aged 16, I have tried to find entrepreneurial ways to drive positive change in the world. In 2004 we established Virgin Unite, the non-profit foundation of the Virgin Group, which unites people and entrepreneurial ideas to create opportunities for a better world. Most of my time is now spent building businesses that will make a positive difference in the world and working with Virgin Unite and organisations it has incubated, such as The Elders, The Carbon War Room, The B Team and Ocean Unite. I also serve on the Global Commission on Drug Policy and supports ocean conservation with the Ocean Elders. I'm a tie-loathing adventurer, philanthropist and troublemaker, who believes in turning ideas into reality. Otherwise known as Dr Yes!
Why it’s good: Richard Branson’s LinkedIn professional bio just exudes his personality. Seen as an eccentric billionaire with a penchant for space travel, the Virgin Group founder meshes his professional accomplishments with the many value-driven, philanthropic passion projects he’s undertaken over the years.
The bio: Ann Handley is a writer, digital marketing pioneer, and Wall Street Journal best-selling author who inspires and empowers you to create marketing that your customers will love, igniting real results for your business.
Ann Handley writes and speaks about how businesses can escape marketing mediocrity to achieve tangible results.
And she will inspire you to do work you’re proud of.
Why it’s good: Marketing guru Ann Handley's profile is short, sweet, and to the point. Perfect for most venues, such as the personal website this is posted on, Handley's bio explains what her strengths are and how she can best help you and your business.
The bio: Joaquin Duato is the Chief Executive Officer of Johnson & Johnson and serves on its Board of Directors. As CEO of the world’s largest healthcare company, Joaquin leads a global workforce of 135,000 employees in developing and delivering transformational and innovative healthcare solutions in Pharmaceuticals, MedTech, and Consumer Health.
From his early days in Spain, Joaquin found inspiration by focusing on how healthcare improved patients’ lives. Over the course of three decades with the company, he developed a deep understanding of what’s possible at Johnson & Johnson by working in all business sectors and across multiple geographies and functions. Before being named CEO, Joaquin served as the Vice Chairman of the Executive Committee, where he provided strategic direction for the Pharmaceutical and Consumer Health sectors and oversaw both Information Technology and the Global Supply Chain.
Joaquin’s many accomplishments include driving the transformation of the company’s pharmaceutical business into a global powerhouse by refocusing strategy and investment around core therapeutic areas and areas of greatest unmet need during his tenure as the sector’s Worldwide Chairman. More recently, he oversaw the company’s rapid response to the COVID-19 pandemic and drove coordination of global initiatives to safeguard the health of employees and ensure business and supply chain continuity, so the company’s life-saving medicines and products reached patients and communities in need.
A believer in the power of technology to accelerate progress in healthcare, Joaquin is leading Johnson & Johnson to harness data science and intelligent automation for insight generation so that teams work as a united front, with expertise and purpose, to solve the world’s toughest health challenges.
A dual citizen of Spain and the United States, Joaquin’s international perspective gives him a deep appreciation of diversity in all its forms. He is committed to building an inclusive workforce that reflects the patients J&J serves, evidenced by nearly a decade acting as Executive Sponsor for the African Ancestry Leadership Council ERG.
Joaquin earned an MBA from ESADE in Barcelona, Spain, and a Master of International Management from Thunderbird School of Global Management in Phoenix, Arizona. He lives in Pennsylvania with his wife and two college-aged children.
Why it’s good: Joaquin Duato, an executive at pharmaceutical company Johnson & Johnson, shares an extensive profile. Not only does this corporate professional bio outline his impressive career, but the long-form entry backs up his status as someone at the top of his game by listing past accomplishments.
The bio: Anne T. Madden is Senior Vice President and General Counsel for Honeywell.
She is responsible for managing legal affairs, Government Relations, health, safety, environment, product stewardship and environmental sustainability. Anne is also responsible for Honeywell’s global M&A efforts.
Prior to taking this role in 2017, Anne was Vice President, Corporate Development and Global Head of M&A, leading acquisition and divestiture activities for 16 years. During her tenure, Honeywell made around 100 acquisitions, representing approximately $15 billion in revenues and divested about 70 businesses, representing close to $9 billion of non-core revenues.
Anne joined Honeywell’s predecessor AlliedSignal in 1996 as General Counsel of Fluorine Products. Later that year she became Vice President and General Counsel of Specialty Chemicals and then Vice President and Deputy General Counsel of Performance Materials and Technologies (PMT).
Prior to that, Anne worked at Shearman & Sterling and KPMG Peat Marwick.
Anne earned an A.B. in English and American literature from Brown University, an M.S. in accounting and MBA in finance from the NYU Stern School of Business, and a J.D. from the Fordham University School of Law, where she was Managing Editor of the Law Review.
Why it’s good: Anne Madden's corporate bio is shorter than Joaquin Duato's, but it still manages to detail her career's trajectory in a comprehensive way. Additionally, it offers quantifiable data to show how proficient she is in her field.
The bio: Host of @TheH3Podcast
(Podcast Booking Inquiries: firstname.lastname@example.org) (Business Inquiries: email@example.com)
Why it’s good: Not all professional bios need to be lengthy descriptions of a person's career, passions, and hobbies. Ethan Klein's Twitter bio not only highlights his current role as the host of the H3H3 Podcast, but also provides potential connections and partners with ways to get in touch. It gets straight to the point in a way that’s atypical for most professional bios, but it certainly meets the definition for short without missing any key information.
Think of a professional bio as the narrative of your career up to this point. Rather than focusing exclusively on chronological minutiae like a resume, a good bio will give you the ability to focus on your “greatest hits” in a way that also showcases your personality. Here are some of the benefits of having a professional bio of your own:
- Serves as a preemptive icebreaker. If you’re regularly meeting new people at work or attending networking events (check out Namecheap’s how-to video on networking), a professional bio lets everyone know who you are beforehand. This is particularly helpful for conferences and industry events.
- Easily conveys your personality. While most professional writing requires some rigidity for professionalism’s sake, your bio can and should speak to who you are as a person.
- Gives you a chance to brag. You worked hard to get awards, receive honors, and achieve professional milestones, so flaunt them if you have them!
- Explains who you serve as a professional. If you have a niche you cater to, your bio can quickly and easily explain the areas of focus that mold your professional life.
- Showcases what you do aside from work. There’s more to life than work, so use your bio to show how well-rounded you are by sharing the hobbies or volunteer work that shape your life outside the office.
- Works as your own sales pitch. If written properly, your professional bio will make you more attractive to potential employers and clients by highlighting exactly what makes you a unique and worthwhile addition to any team or project.
Anyone can write their own professional bio. Whether you’re looking to book additional side gigs, trying to promote past work, or currently seeking full-time employment, crafting the right professional bio for your needs can give you a leg up in achieving your goals. Through the use of tools like Namecheap Site Maker, you can put together a personal or professional site that highlights your work and showcases who you are as a person by broadcasting your bio to the internet. Likewise, if you’re looking for tips on a crafting professional bio for networking purposes, you may want to check out Namecheap’s business card maker, which can help you make a great first impression with a well-designed calling card.
Ready to get your name out there and build your professional brand? It’s time to write your professional bio and use Namecheap as your source for a website and professional identity.