Once upon a time, I got an email from my son, Mark, suggesting that I check out this new thing called LinkedIn. I joined on 2/4/2004. Several years later, I found out that I was actually the 197,161st person to join LinkedIn. That made me curious. So, I looked at Mark Roberge (#36,253) and Pete Caputa (#7,346) to see when they had joined. Here’s why I joined. Back then, LinkedIn was suggesting that if I was connected to Pete, and I was connected to Mark, and Pete wanted to be introduced to Mark, he’d ask me for an introduction. Now, if I know them both well enough, trust and respect them enough, I’m gonna make that introduction knowing that they’ll both be professional and bring value to knowing each other. Now, honestly, like many early adopters back then, I didn’t do much with it. I was a face to face, belly to belly salesman that didn’t have much use for this fad called the internet. LinkedIn grew without me, but eventually I started using it more. Now, I’m on LinkedIn every day along with 200 million others.
Last December, Lori Richardson (#29,426) and I had a blog-versation about whether or not to show or hide our connections on LinkedIn. (We agreed to disagree.) I just read Lori’s article, “Top Mistakes Using LinkedIn for Sales – Impersonal Requests”. This isn’t a new topic and many that I respect have written on it before. Frank Belzer (#18,132,536) shared 7 rules in 2011. Trish Bertuzzi (#230,786) has written six articles with LinkedIn in the title and the aforementioned Pete ‘I’ve got LinkedIn seniority’ Caputa has 10 different articles mentioning LinkedIn. Casey Lockwood (#26,117,371) invited me to connect last October 16th and wound up writing this article for my blog.