I can’t believe I’ve been on LinkedIn for 10 years. It’s a great tool, but one that could be so much better.
We’ve all seen a lot of changes on Facebook and Twitter, some good, some terrible. Many of those new features and formats came about because of competition from other social networks.
But no real competitor has challenged LinkedIn. Which is a shame, because competition makes for better products and services.
As someone who uses LinkedIn on a daily basis, let me share my Top Two pet peeves about the service. They’re both excuses I hear often from other users.
The first excuse is one I hear from friends. I’ll reach out to them through LinkedIn messaging to ask a question or wish them a “Happy Birthday.” Weeks or months later, they’ll respond with an apologetic “I hardly ever log in to LinkedIn.”
This is an easy problem to fix: Make sure notifications are going to your current email address. Often, users will have them sent to their work email, but then forget to update it when they change companies.
1. In LinkedIn, go to your tiny avatar in the upper right and click “Privacy & Settings – Manage” in the drop-down menu.
2. Click “Change/Add” next to “Primary Email.”
3. If you’re getting too many notifications (a common refrain), click the “Communications” tab and then “Select the types of messages you’re willing to receive.”
The second excuse is one I hear from strangers. I receive invitations to connect all the time. I don’t often recognize the senders — sorry, guy who sat in my talk in the last row 4 years ago — so I always send a challenge: “Where do I know you from?” or “Have we had the chance to meet in person?”
Very often, the reply is “Sorry, I accidentally invited everyone.”
I ain’t buying it. I’ve never used a social network, email program or online service that wormed its way into my address book and spammed hundreds of my friends and associates without my permission.
Maybe LinkedIn is at fault for designing a cunning interface. But it’s a losing strategy in the end, making new users look bad and chasing away veteran users receiving too many false invites.
Make your time on LinkedIn count. Use it with purpose, and contact me with questions.
Even if we don’t know each other,
you can still follow me on LinkedIn …
P.S. Share your LinkedIn pet peeves in the comments.