6 Annoying LinkedIn Behaviors and How to Break Them

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I’ve been lucky on LinkedIn, procuring many incredible opportunities with both business owners and recruiters that have reached out on the site— especially for freelance and remote work.

As a media expert, I’ve also become accustomed to discovering myriad ways people misuse its intended purpose— especially recently— propelling an ‘executive alternative’ into another sophomoric social sphere. 

The most major offenders?

Connecting then immediately asking for favors.

I see very frequent posts with people griping about this issue. Someone will confirm a connection, and BAM! they’re asking for your time, insight or expertise for their personal benefit— which is especially annoying if they don’t have any connection to the requester. 

Fix: If you’re starting a business or trying to introduce your brand to an expanded network, invest in a LinkedIn Premium account— inMail is super helpful to me, personally, as I don’t feel spammy or out of line reaching out with a concise, persuasive introduction message.

Posting non-relevant social content or conversation. 

There is way too much throw away content popping up in my home page feed for a few likes. Poorly crafted memes, unnecessary questions or pointed, poorly executed commentary, and that’s just scratching the surface. Some days, it feels more like Facebook dressed up in an ill-fitting suit than a useful site for professionals. 

Fix: Promote yourself, content or business with the same discretion that you’d wish to see others practice. Above and beyond curating meaningful content that’s beneficial for sharing socially, be aware of how well it fits for the particular medium’s audience. 

Adding people that you don’t know without a purpose. 

I have so many ‘ghost’ connections. I find that really frustrating, even though I must admit, I'll typically accept many requests that are seemingly without purpose. It's important to keep in mind that building a 500+ person network of impersonal additions is never as beneficial as a core group of relevant, close connections.

Fix: As I mentioned with a Premium account and inMail— it’s the best way to build up to connections instead of just ‘collecting’ another person for your network by arbitrarily adding them. The site only works if everyone is diligent in curating relationships that are actually meaningful and progressive.  

Creating one-line ‘think pieces’ that are essentially LI click-bait.

This is my number one pet peeve on LinkedIn— which I’ve noticed has increased in prevalence as of late:

When people write like this.

Skipping a line for effect while being only pseudo-affecting.

But they keep going because eventually they have a point.

Maybe. 

Fix: Share meaningful content that has long term value. In a recent CJC interview, Jesse Hagen noted,

I’m sometimes discouraged by how disposable [content] is treated, a regrettable byproduct of the continuous deluge we’re exposed to on the internet. I hope publishers and networks create mechanisms better designed to preserve the shelf life of slow-burn work that sacrifices a viral angle in favor of being layered, complex, and worthy of repeated reads, views and listens.”

 Keeping distance with close contacts.

LinkedIn is an awesome way to keep a dossier of the best connections you’ve met over time. One of the best parts of building your career is creating long-lasting relationships that will far surpass a single job. Don’t let too much time pass when keeping up with them digitally as they progress on their journey.

Fix: I like to reach out to my closer-than-acquaintance connections for their email addresses if I don’t have it after we’ve synced on LinkedIn—sending them a quick note to exchange emails after an invitation makes it feel a little more personal when you reach out to them that way in the future.

Choosing inappropriate headline information.

Detailing superfluous content (I’ve seen “I accept all requests” notation in headlines more than once) or creating cutesy titles for yourself that are meant to grab attention, end up making the wrong type of impression. It’s important to stand out, but you don’t want to look unsophisticated by doing so.

Fix: Procure a well-curated headline and summary that is straightforward in expressing your skillset and career trajectory. Brevity and conciseness are a more appropriate way to showcase your true talent— it will also make you seem authentic in a way that sharing too much can’t.