Posted by Mitch Mitchell on May 26, 2008
Are you a member of LinkedIn? It’s a business networking website that I’ve been a member of for maybe 3 or 4 years now. Not counting the people I already knew from elsewhere, in that entire time I’ve only personally met one of those people, and only once had a second conversation with someone I’d met there. So, it hasn’t really been much of a benefit for me.
However, my friend Vincent Wright has been a major advocate pretty much since he signed up. He’s gone out of his way to set up all sorts of groups for LinkedIn members to participate in. He’s set them up on LinkedIn, then went a step further and set one up on Yahoo. Both groups have had a fantastic response, lots of participation and members, a bunch of great topics.
Yet, even there, one could notice something always seemed to be missing. People were talking, but no one was really doing the kind of business LinkedIn said they could do. Truthfully, LinkedIn has never been set up for open communications; at least not the free version. I don’t know anyone paying to be a member there, so I don’t know if it’s easier for them to communicate with each other or not.
Anyway, back to my friend Vincent. He started noticing some things a while ago, and now it’s gotten to the point where he’s written a post called The Audacity Of Nope that I think anyone who participates in LinkedIn, or may be thinking about participating, should check out, just to make sure they feel it’s what they want to sign up for. I mean, if they can turn off someone like this, someone whose professional life, it seemed, revolved around LinkedIn, then what is there for the rest of us whose only hope has been to make some connections with the type of people we’d like to work with?
And trust me, I’ve really given it the ol’ college try. I’ve asked for connections through people I already knew, but never received a response from the one I wanted to meet. LinkedIn only allows 5 connection requests at a time, so you have to decide later to eliminate some and try again with someone else. For my main career, there’s not a lot of options out there as far as people I’d like to meet to help my business out. If only two of these people had responded, I might feel as though it was a great place to remain. Right now, I have to admit that I’m thinking it just might all be a waste of time. I’m not dropping out just yet, but I am leaning that way.
This brings about an interesting question to ask all of you; how do you really feel about some of these social or business networking sites? How many of them are giving you what you really want or need? Who remembers my post on my thoughts about Facebook? What say you, folks?