But only know 100 of them…
When I was in college I had to network the hard way. You know, I had to call people and ask to come meet them. I had to go to events and stalk people…accidentally sit at their table.
But a funny thing happened. I actually met people. I shook a hand and got a business card. And guys, this was in 2000 – so not too long ago.
Why am I mentioning this today? Because I swear I’ve never met half of the people in my LinkedIn network. (And I’m pretty sure I don’t know them either.) I probably shouldn’t admit that but I’m guilty of accepting ‘invites to connect’ from these strangers. After all, they said ‘please’ when they asked me to join their network. But it did get me thinking when it became ok to send invites to people we don’t know and have never met.
It’s easy to fall into this trap, right? And of course LinkedIn makes it so easy to do. However, as you go forth and connect, consider two thoughts:
Of course there are many other ways to get more out of your connections. In my opinion, the bottom line is we can’t let LinkedIn erode the principals of solid networking. Instead, we should be using it to strengthen them.