Why we should be advising jobseekers to reject LinkedIn connection requests

I took the long way round to come to the realisation that having "over 500" people in your LinkedIn network isn't necessarily a good thing, particularly if you're job hunting. 

This is the basis for my guest post on JobMob which you can read in full here: http://jobmob.co.il/blog/reject-linkedin-requests


I'd be interested to hear your thoughts on the issue...

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Keeping it real on LinkedIn 

I've worked very hard to build up my network and approaching 500 connections all of which I've had professional contact with over the years.  I do not however think it’s a bad thing for individuals seeking employment.  My thought process is that I am well connected within my industry and the connections that I've made are well respected and think the same of me.  

A recruiter's or companies' perception, one would hope would be viewed as a professional with their industry demonstrating expertise, knowledge and being well known and connected to enhance through those very connections a company’s positioning and gaining a future employee whose expertise in their field would drive performance through leadership.

 

I believe this to be the intent of LinkedIn and all its members to reflect professionalism.

 

Happy Hunting!

RQ

I agree with Raoul, there are pitfalls to accepting invitations, and certainly I do not accept all nebulous invitations of people that have 1 connection or have not set up a proper profile. I nevertheless receive spam from a couple of people and report it as such.

Now saying this, I see the upsides as far outweighing the downsides especially for a job seeker, but only if their profile is robust, up to date, and active. The free exchange of information and ideas is what makes linkedin great and the idea that I can find a candidate in a remote place for a role that may change their life for the better only hammers that point home. If I had not accepted invitations from some 'random' people then I would not have been able to do business with them and have had opportunities to recruit for companies that would not have found my company by any other conventional means.

Everyone should manage their profile, to be sure, and that is the way to minimize the irritation of spam etc.

I am also more valuable to people that connect to me, companies and candidates alike, with a larger network. It would be nice to meet everyone I am connected with on Linkedin, but we live in a global community now and to shut that off because I cannot physically sit down with someone makes very little sense.

Pursue the greatness in yourself and others,

Steve

How the hell do you have 500 personal connections in your network?  Who has that kind of time to "know" that many people.  Regardless if you've ever met them in person or not.  That's crazy!

I love this response Steven - I think you're absolutely spot on, especially on the up to date profile part and being valuable to people who connect with you. It's important to remember good networking isn't just about what you can get, but what you can give to others also.

Steven Davidson said:

I agree with Raoul, there are pitfalls to accepting invitations, and certainly I do not accept all nebulous invitations of people that have 1 connection or have not set up a proper profile. I nevertheless receive spam from a couple of people and report it as such.

Now saying this, I see the upsides as far outweighing the downsides especially for a job seeker, but only if their profile is robust, up to date, and active. The free exchange of information and ideas is what makes linkedin great and the idea that I can find a candidate in a remote place for a role that may change their life for the better only hammers that point home. If I had not accepted invitations from some 'random' people then I would not have been able to do business with them and have had opportunities to recruit for companies that would not have found my company by any other conventional means.

Everyone should manage their profile, to be sure, and that is the way to minimize the irritation of spam etc.

I am also more valuable to people that connect to me, companies and candidates alike, with a larger network. It would be nice to meet everyone I am connected with on Linkedin, but we live in a global community now and to shut that off because I cannot physically sit down with someone makes very little sense.

Pursue the greatness in yourself and others,

Steve

Peter, as Raoul can also verify - it's VERY easy to accumulate a large number of personal connections in a person's lifetime.

If you think about all the people you ever went to school/college/university with, people you worked with in previous jobs, friends, friends of friends, family members - close and extended, business associates, neighbours, clients.....total that up and you would easily be in the hundreds with the amount of people you "know".

The good (and sometimes bad) thing about the digital age we're in is that all this is amplified massively - you can now "know" hundreds and maybe thousands of people in a very short space of time without having to leave your front door. That, my friend, is evolution! :-)


Peter Ceccarelli said:

How the hell do you have 500 personal connections in your network?  Who has that kind of time to "know" that many people.  Regardless if you've ever met them in person or not.  That's crazy!

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