Why Should I Accept Your LinkedIn Connection?

Why Should I Accept Your LinkedIn Connection?

Why Should I Accept Your LinkedIn Connection?
I don't know you, but how much does it matter?

You just sent me an invitation to connect on LinkedIn. Should I accept it?
If I knew you, that would be one thing. I get invitations from lots of people that I work with or have personally met or emailed so that's usually a no-brainer. I don't understand how anyone in business can't be using this professional social media service. I told my college-age kids (and their friends) when they first started looking for internships and summer jobs that the first thing they needed to do was setup a good LinkedIn profile.Everyone in business needs one. Every prospective employer looks at it.

What exactly is a good LinkedIn profile? It should be the same as your resume, because really, isn't LinkedIn just a database of resumes? It should have a short description of your accomplishments, but not too long because we all know you're a hard worker, passionate and committed, reliable -- so is everyone else. For God's sake, make sure your picture is professional and wasn't taken at a happy hour or Game 6 of the NBA playoffs. This is LinkedIn, not Facebook, and I want to see what you'll look like at work, not when you're sweaty and drunk. I'm so shallow I've actually turned down job applicants because I hated their photo on LinkedIn.

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If I don't know who you are and you're from specific parts of Africa, Eastern Europe, South America, the Middle East or Florida, I'm likely going to reject you. This is not a terrorism thing. I've just been conditioned by years of spam, spoof emails, viruses, ransomware and other hacking attacks that always seem to start with a kind invitation from those parts of the world. I don't know how all this stuff works, but if your profile looks suspicious I'm afraid that by accepting your invitation you'll do something bad to my account or to those that I'm connected.

That's not to say that I reject every invitation from people I don't know who reside in those areas.  Some make it through my very comprehensive, thorough and meticulous approval process (which consists of a 30 second glance at their profile). To me, a legit LinkedIn profile from someone who lives in a far off or dangerous place (like New Jersey) that is completely filled out with jobs and schools and has connections with more than 500 people, including a few in my network and follows a few smart thought leaders that I admire, like Richard Branson. That's usually enough for me.

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So back to you.

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