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LinkedIn: When You Don’t Adhere to the Rules, Don’t Expect Other People to Do So

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LinkedIn: When You Don't Adhere to the Rules, Don't Expect Other People to Do So

A couple of weeks ago I found an article in Forbes magazine referencing LinkedIn. As I am one of the power users of the platform, I thought I would add my personal thoughts.

Here is what the article read:

Very few people will ever see your resume, but millions of people can see your LinkedIn profile right now! It is your professional billboard. When you create your LinkedIn profile, you tell the world what you want the world to know about you.

Your LinkedIn profile not only showcases your experience, your education and your skills. It conveys a lot more information than that! Your LinkedIn profile also communicates your personality, your thoughts about your profession and your career, and your creativity.

That’s why you don’t want your LinkedIn profile to diminish your professional flame by sending the message that you are less capable or less professional than you are!

It reminded me that in the last year I have noticed a trend on LinkedIn that reduces the value of this great business tool.

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More and more people voice their political opinion and sometimes in really harsh ways. This is a very volatile political environment, but LinkedIn is not the platform to share your views. While it’s important to showcase your personality and create a profile that reflects your unique persona, there is professional ways to do that. You can list your hobbies in the “Additional Info” section, or have people endorse you, which will provide a very unique view of who you are.

The power of LinkedIn stems from the fact that it is a solely professional platform for business people to interact. This means that when I, as a business person approach another business person, it’s fair game because we both chose to be on a professional platform that enables us to interact with each other.

But this premise only works when business people act like business people and don’t transfer their personal beliefs on to LinkedIn. While I’m really happy when somebody gets married, LinkedIn is not the place to showcase your wedding photo on your profile. I also don’t care to see any other personal photos, unless they are business related. It diminishes the value of the platform. There is only so much time in a day, especially in sales so spending time on LinkedIn should be meaningful time to do research, find new prospects and monitor trends.

When my news-feed gets flooded with irrelevant posts, at some point I need to take action and delink you.

Facebook, on the other hand is the place to share personal beliefs although in general I would recommend avoiding certain posts or photos, SnapChat can help you out there.

It’s really all about expectations. When people sign-up for Match.com, they are free to approach other people for a date. I expect people to post photos of their vacation on Facebook, but I also anticipate business people to observe business etiquette on LinkedIn.

When you are an attractive woman in business and you post a photo of yourself that looks like a glamor shot with the lens focusing in on your low-cut shirt with yourcleavage showing, don’t be surprised when people reach out to you for other reasons, than trying to book a business meeting AND please don’t complain about it on LinkedIn (which is exactly what happened the other week).

When you don’t adhere to the rules, don’t expect other people to do so.

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