If MySpace is Facebook’s creepy, drug-addict uncle, then LinkedIn is the annoying, overachieving cousin. Nobody really loves looking at LinkedIn, but it’s borderline-necessary to try and appear somewhat professional. If you’re a recent graduate, LinkedIn is a decent way to network, and a GREAT way to look at hotties while still appearing busy. Upon signing up, here are the DOs and DON’Ts of LinkedIn.
DO: Endorse your friends for unrelated/strange skills. “Mike has endorsed you for 4 skills: Beekeeping, Counterterrorism, Basements, and Milk.” Getting the LinkedIn endorsement e-mail is a bit like getting a Christmas gift from a co-worker. You’re pretty sure it’ll be a bad gift, but you’re still sort of intrigued.
DON’T: Take LinkedIn too seriously. Granted, your profile picture shouldn’t be one of you doing lines off a hooker’s prosthetic limb, but putting too much time into overthinking your profile is a waste. Nobody likes or trusts the 22-year-old with 500+ connections and a summary longer than Genesis.
DO: Have an open profile. Curious about flirting with other companies? Find a few headhunters or hiring managers at other companies and view their profiles. I’m sure their hard-on will fizzle once they find out that someone with “Specialist” or “Coordinator” in their title checked them out, but hell, it’s worth a shot. At the very least, when creeping on cute guys or girls, you’ll hopefully get notified when they reciprocate and check out yours.
DON’T: Allow LinkedIn to send connect invites to all people you’ve e-mailed with in the past. Everyone has received at least four connect invites from random people. The name rings a bell, but you’re not quite sure who they are. Then it comes to you — you once sold them a futon stained with five different bodily fluids on Craigslist four years ago.
DO: Remember that your company can track your activity. Sure it may be a watered down version of Big Brother, and I doubt Edward Snowden is in charge of security, but be mindful. If you’re using your company’s Extra Special LinkedIn 2K14 Edition, then they can monitor everything. Be wary if you’re courting potential employers or searching for jobs on LinkedIn (yes, this conflicts with point #3, but just be more inconspicuous).
DON’T: Connect with too many social media types. Their main job is to spam and molest groups on LinkedIn, which will unfortunately show up all over your feed. Of course you can block them, however what’s the point of being connected to a Jr. Social Media Account Manager Intern in the first place just because you met them on Tinder?
These are the LinkedIn basics. Try to enjoy LinkedIn for what it is and don’t get too depressed when a 54 year-old former co-worker reaches out to you asking if you know of any companies in the area that are hiring.