The Top Question That I Get About LinkedIn

“Who Should I Accept Connection Requests From?”

I’ve taught my Biz Hacks and LinkedIn *UNLEASHED* workshops to thousands of people and this is the number one question that always gets asked.

And because I’ve been more sensitive during COVID (read: Sarah’s been writing negative Google reviews to take out her frustrations), I see that I need to address this now more than ever.

For whatever reason, I have been noticing an uptick in LinkedIn Connection requests on my account. In the past two weeks, I received 50. 99% of them are people that I have never knowingly met (in-person, online, or otherwise) and the connection requests were not accompanied by a personalized message (a BIG pet peeve of mine).

The other night, I decided to review them. I created my own criteria which is, by the way, the answer to the big question “Who Should I Accept Connection Requests From?”.

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Underlying these criteria should be what you want to get out of being on LinkedIn. For me, my goal is to be a resource and have resources for getting things done for small businesses and entrepreneurs. While it was once a local endeavor, I have been branching out on a more national level, which has made it slightly less obvious on who to connect with.

Here are the criteria for “no’s” that I came up with:
1.  Anyone with a spammy looking Headlines like
”?- I help people JUST LIKE YOU get more sales! -?”
2.  Anyone from foreign lands with zero common connections
3.  Anyone whose mutual connections are not people that I know in real life
4.  Anyone with seemingly zero professional or geographical connection

32 out of 50 made it through the criteria. And sure enough, as soon as I accepted 32 of those 50 requests, things started happening.

One person started spamming my email to join their program “Serious Training For Serious Coaches”. The tail end of their email address was The worst part? There was no unsubscribe.

Another person emailed me a glossy e-newsletter telling me all about all of the things that their business does to help me as a fellow business owner, could I watch their 90-second business overview video? and asked for a business meeting.

A third sent me a message stating that they were looking to have conversations with qualified investors and sent me a calendar link.


This is why LinkedIn gets a bad rap.

Honestly, some of this crap is bound to get through. The best advice I can give is for you to not be that person but rather be the person that creates actual relationships and respects the folks that you are connecting with- even if you’ve never met them in person.

Let’s not reduce LinkedIn to an impersonal collection of meaningless connections. Please.

2 thoughts on “The Top Question That I Get About LinkedIn”

  1. My general rule is to not accept a connection from someone with whom I have not had a personal interaction. I use LinkedIn to keep track of people I know, which is also the people from whom I expect to develop business.

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