You love LinkedIn. You stalk people on it before meetings. You use it to search for prospective employees. You read an article or two. You might even toss out a few brilliant thoughts to a group you belong to. Over the years it’s become a great resource to help you manage your business, grow your community and get information. Because of that you’ve become very active. Which means that, like any large community, you’ve run into a few people that you don’t like. Actually, you hate them. And you know who they are.
1. The incomplete profiler.
You hate it when you’re trying to dig up a little information on someone and when you come across them on LinkedIn they have an incomplete profile. As the English say: that’s just not cricket (or if you’re American, you say: that’s a bunch of BS). Everyone knows that to play in the LinkedIn space you’ve got to take the time to fully complete your profile. You need to know everywhere that guy has worked, how long, where he went to college and even what groups he belongs to. You’re looking for some kind of common interest here before you have lunch together so throw out a bone, am I right?
2. The spammer.
Oh come on, dude. Doesn’t he understand the LinkedIn honor code? The whole community is all about getting away from email for a little while. You already get too much spam in your regular inbox, and now this jabroni is sending you an unsolicited email promoting his new book? Back off man, this is LinkedIn and you are disturbing the karma.
3. The complete stranger from the Middle East.
OK, Achmed Isttandtiber from Jibajistan. I don’t know who you are, but something seems off. Your photo looks like it came from a clothes-shopping site. Your university is unheard of. Your occupation (computer programmer) sounds a little like “hacker.” You have four other connections. The fact that you’re asking to “connect” with me seems a little strange as I’ve never been more than 90 miles away from Philly in my life and am allergic to anything with hummus. Is there a Homeland Security LinkedIn page somewhere?
4. The person who requires you know her email address.
You found her! Now you want to connect with her and…what? You’re now being asked to submit her email address just to send an invitation? Unfair! Not cricket! BS! The whole reason why you’re connecting with her is so that, in a momentary loss of sanity, you hope she will accept your connection and you can access all of her professional details which includes her email address. Then you can send her an email promoting your company and products. Asking you for an email address at the beginning of this process completely screws up your plan to send her unwanted communications. And you hate that.
5. The only-LinkedIn-emailer.
I think it’s great that LinkedIn has its own email system, except it’s kind of sucky. You have to be online all the time. It doesn’t integrate with any other email system like Outlook or Gmail. The messages don’t come into my customer relationship management system — they just stay kind of out there in LinkedIn World. For these reasons, most people avoid extended conversations on LinkedIn. But there’s always the few that don’t. You hate those people, too.
6. The “please join my group” person.
Thanks, but you really don’t want to join another group. You know it’s cool. Yes, you do have a passing interest in startups, marketing, technology, Office Space, insurance strategies, paper supply deals and CPAs Who Love Justin Bieber. You really do. But you don’t have the time to get really involved, and you don’t want to get buried in emails and messages every time someone has something brilliant to say about Justin Bieber either. You’re not trying to be a jerk by blowing off the invitation. It just kind of seems that way.
7. The unsolicited endorser.
Ugh. Now what do you do? This random guy who you met once at a networking event has now endorsed you as a “marketing expert.” Admit it: you’re not really a “marketing expert,” are you? In fact, you’re not really “expert” at anything other than eating chocolate and naming every Phish album in date released order. So did he really mean that? Does he really think you’re an expert? That’s awkward, and now you’re forced to endorse him back, right? Otherwise you’re totally being rude. But you’re really not sure if you should endorse this guy as the Republican candidate for President of the United States, given his sketchy business history and his reluctance to release his tax returns. But he endorsed you, so it looks like you have no choice. Do people just endorse other people willy-nilly like this? Apparently so, in LinkedIn World.
8. The person who hides her connections.
What is this madness? The whole damn point of LinkedIn is to see who’s…uh….”linked in” to whom. Get it? That we’re “linking” to each other? That the whole world is “linked in?”
Hiding one’s connections on LinkedIn is like not dressing up for a costume party or still believing that that the New England Patriots have never cheated, ever, ever, ever. Get with the program. If someone is going to be on LinkedIn, it’s an all-in, share-your-community commitment. You hate that guy who doesn’t play the game the right way. Yes, Bill Belichick, we’re also talking about you.
9. The guy who includes LinkedIn’s CEO Jeff Weiner as an “Influencer.”
What a suck-up. We all know what that guy’s doing — he’s angling for a free premium membership, isn’t he? You think Weiner’s going to fall for that? No way man, no way.
10. The “TED Talks” follower.
Oh, she is just so cerebral isn’t she? She follows TED Talks. She wants the world to know that she enjoys obscure intellectual discourses like “the neurons that have shaped civilization” or “why great architecture should tell a story” (yes, these are actual TED talks). She is committed to showing the world how super-smart and engaged she is. She’s not like you, a slob who binge-watches “Better Call Saul” and The Kardashians on the weekend. She’s smart. She follows TED Talks.
11. The take, take, taker.
This is the guy who innocently asks you to connect and, although you don’t know him, you accept because he seems OK. And then two seconds later he’s messaging you with demands. Join his group. Buy his book. Have a a coffee with him? “Let’s figure out how we can partner together!” he says, which really means “let’s figure out how you can help me because I’m out of a job or business is lousy.”
12. The annoying guy.
That’s the person who’s clogging up your LinkedIn with his stupid articles and pointless updates throughout the day that no one cares about, least of all you. Yes. I’m that guy.