Reminder: Don’t Ask For LinkedIn Connections From People You Don’t Know

Reminder: Don’t Ask For LinkedIn Connections From People You Don’t Know

We’ve all been there: a request for a LinkedIn connection from someone we’ve never even met. Gartner analyst Jenny Sussin reminds us why this is a stupid idea that devalues the usefulness of LinkedIn for everyone.

In a blog post, Sussin neatly highlights the problem with randomly reaching out to others:

On LinkedIn you’re asked to “introduce” connections to one another, “recommend” connections, and “endorse” connections. How can I possibly introduce one person to another if I haven’t met either of them myself? How can I recommend someone for a position when I have no idea who they are? How can I endorse a person when the only thing I know about them is they have the search skills to find me on LinkedIn?

No social network is perfect, and unexpected connection requests are one of the hassles of using LinkedIn. Make it better for everyone and don’t connect with people you haven’t met.

Why I’m So Crazy About LinkedIn…And You Should Be Too [Gartner]


  • I get LinkedIn requests from some very tenuously connected people who I’ve never heard of. I rarely reject them straight away; I tend to leave the request for a month or two as it may turn out that I have been working with them on a project and they know me but I’ve not had anything to do with them up to the time they sent the request. If during the “invitation cooling off period” I get to know them, then the invitation is accepted (unless, as happened recently, they turn out to be an incompetent arse).

  • I always laugh at the random endorsements I get from the random adds. Having them endorse me on a skill they have no idea how well I do really makes me feel great! Endorsements are such a waste of space on LinkedIn.

  • LinkedIn has updated a lot of its inviting pages on the app and site that send off an invite without requiring a cover note, or selecting one of the buttons on how you know each other. It’s really starting to encourage the old fashioned MySpace 1.0 behaviour of “look at all my friends who aren’t my friends.” Really annoying.

    Ps – wanna follows me on twitter? Just kidding.

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