Friday, July 02, 2010

Another Rant on Social Media Linking Policies - Job Search LinkedIn Mistake

I got the below question from a friend who is seeking to hire a few people for his growing software company.


Here’s one for you. I currently have two jobs posted on LinkedIn and I’m in the process of interviewing candidates. Shortly after posting the job, I started receiving “join my network” invites from potential candidates applying for the job. I’ve also received “join my network” invites from candidates within hours of conducting their interview – kind of like a follow-up / thank you letter.

I have not accepted any of the requests as of yet – and certainly will not accept those I’ve never met.

If I were to follow your rule of ‘coffee/beer/meal’ – technically I’ve sat down and “talked” to the candidates I’ve interviewed. On the other hand, I will not be hiring all of them. In fact, I might not hire any of them. So, should I accept their request? I’m leaning towards not.


Joe (Name Changed To Protect The Guilty)

Come on people.... do not send social media links to people you do not know. I could scream it from the rooftops, and still people think social media is "Speed Dating" for business. It is not that shallow. There has to be a reason to be connected to each other or it is just more noise.

Being interviewed by a person for a job does not necessarily create a legitimate business connection (it might, if you really hit it off with the person. However, if that happens you will most likely get the job!). I do not think a job interview is equal to the "Coffee / Meal / Beer Rule". Plus it can be awkward if the person hiring thinks you are a loser.

There are many who think it is smart to link like crazy to every stranger on the planet. Their foolish linking lust makes LinkedIn and other social media is a great big phone book full of strangers. It makes them feel good as they collect large numbers of "fake friends", but with no real foundation, it is all a fraud. Grrrrrrr.

The folks who are sending LinkedIn requests to hiring managers who they have never met, or to people who interviewed them (and do not select them for the job) are hurting their chances more than helping. It is ridiculous.

A LINKEDIN REQUEST IS NOT A THANK YOU NOTE. I told my friend never to hire any clown who sends a social media connection request instead of a real "Thank You Note" (oh God, here come the zealots who will attack me for my opinion, only seeing this issue from their own point of view. Leave comments on this post telling me how I "don't get it", but I warn you, if you are nasty and do not leave your name and a real link to your own blog I will not publish your mean spirited comments).

Remember, building real relationships is not about YOU and your social media policies / beliefs. Instead it is about how the other person wants to cultivate the relationship. Moving too fast is proof you are an amateur.

What do you think? Should my friend link to these job seekers who are hungry to be his buddy?

Have A Great Day.



Unknown said...

Thom, I completely agree with you. A job interview is not a sufficient business or personal relationship to warrant sending a LinkedIn invitation or Facebook friend request.

However, following the company or individual on Twitter is another story. It shows interest in keeping in touch and following what is happening with the company.

BUT, following on Twitter does not substitute for a thank you note!

thomsinger said...


I agree... Twitter is different, and following is not a bad thing... in fact a good thing.

But the quick draw linking stuff has got to stop. I was giving a speech and mentioned my "Coffee / Meal / Beer Rule", and four folks in the audience had already (from their phones) sent LinkedIn or Facebook requests. Then they sent emails apologizing once they heard my rule and the reason. They just saw me speak (did not know me) and went and linked. Nuts. That is like proposing marriage to a person you see in the car next to you at a stop light.