LinkedIn provides a powerful and productive platform to share information and perspective through posts, offer opinions and feedback through comments and make introductions and recommendations through connections. When using any of these LinkedIn features, it is wise to be positive, prepared and purposeful; clear, confident and committed; direct, decisive and deliberate; gracious, grateful and generous and savvy, succinct and selective.
As LinkedIn has grown and become an increasingly effective and efficient way for employees and entrepreneurs to gain visibility and credibility and to promote themselves and their businesses, there are less memorable and more forgettable posts and comments.
The posts and comments that have the most impact are ones that are well prepared and thoughtfully written. I was so impressed by a post that I actually printed it off and kept it as an example of the right way to do a post. It not only offered a thoughtful opinion but also seemed to choose each word with care and consideration for the individuals who would be reading it. Another post that was intriguing, interesting and informative was a 40-second video that had a successful Canadian entrepreneur recruiting energetic and enthusiastic sales people. In the video, she came across as authentic, appreciative and approachable. Who would not want to apply for these positions and work with this strong and sincere leader?
The forgettable posts and comments that have the least impact and now seem to proliferate on LinkedIn are sloppy, self serving and just plain boring. Some examples are when people put meaningless one word comments. If you are going to post or comment on a video, article or someone’s success then do it in a way that will be meaningful to them not to you. Personalize it and write a warm and wonderful sentence that will make them and the other people reading it feel special. It is smart and simple to contribute a post or comment that can make a difference, lift someone up when they are feeling down or celebrate someone’s career or business achievement.
Many LinkedIn users feel that they must have as many connections as possible so that they can impress others with the size and scope of their networks. Their goal is to focus on quantity over quality. I believe that you are the people who surround you and that your LinkedIn connections should reflect your business life whether you are an employee or an entrepreneur.
Every three-six months, review your connections on LinkedIn to see if any should be deleted from your network. If you are an employee, you may do this if you have left one organization to join another and some of the connections from the former organization are ones that you no longer want to keep in your network. If you are entrepreneur, there may be connections from a business that you no longer own or operate that are ones that you want to delete. I have had many people disconnect from me and, for the most part, they are people who are no longer clients or who are not interested in keeping me as a connection. This is business, it is not personal.
Take as much care with your LinkedIn posts, comments and connections as you do with your LinkedIn headline, profile summary and employment history. You always want to make a positive and powerful impression as you never know who will see or read them.