You can neither hide behind your screen…

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You can neither hide behind your screen…

…nor a great profile. LinkedIn, it’s a must now, not just for those of us running businesses but for those in the corporate world. It is expected that we have an online professional presence. I am pleased to say that most of the time, the majority have a profile.

However, beyond setting up a profile and working on it so it looks appealing for those that might be looking for us, people totally forget how else LinkedIn communicates them. They forget that even if they haven’t met someone, they are communicating something about themselves by how they interact on LinkedIn and to those they have met, they are building on what they have communicated in person (hopefully building rather than confusing!). Both situations – online and in person affect people’s perceptions of us and this perception is very likely to affect if they (continue to) interact with you and how.

So this week’s article is some top LinkedIn etiquette tips to contribute to a positive personal image.

  1. Always send someone a personalised connection request – the exception to this is when their settings are such that you can only invite them from the initial listing with no invite possible.
  2. When you accept a connection request, always message the person to thank them and see if you can help.
  3. Avoid writing anything too personal on the feed.
  4. Think carefully about how frequently you post on the newsfeed and in groups. It should be far less than Twitter, you don’t want people to feel bombarded.
  5. Make time to comment on and share others’ posts and articles.
  6. If someone comments on your post, appreciate their comment via a reply or a like.
  7. Regularly check your messages/connection requests in case they are not coming through to your email correctly.
  8. Even if someone sends you an over the top and unwanted sales/recruitment message, try to send a polite decline (it may be worth creating a standard message template for this!).
  9. Make sure if you post in groups or send something to an individual, that it is entirely relevant for the group or the person.
  10. Think before you comment. It’s so easy to rashly respond with a criticism/negative. That is not always the wrong thing to do but make sure you have thought it through.

None of these are rocket science but so many people think less about how they interact and engage with others when they are behind their screen. The key thing to remember is to treat these interactions like more tangible ones such as email and face-to-face. Don’t let negative LinkedIn etiquette give you a negative personal image and affect your professional success.

Joanna Gaudoin helps professional people communicate themselves positively and engage effectively with others to build positive business relationships. For every business scenario, Joanna helps you and your team create a positive image and build likeability and trust – essential for professional success. Email Joanna if you’d like to discuss how she can help [email protected] or click here to receive her ‘Boost Your Personal Impact’ guide to get you thinking about why image matters and what makes the difference.

Image courtesy of freeimages.com/CarlosMendes

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