Why are we still connected?

Are you connected to people in LinkedIn that you don’t know, have never talked to or even exchanged an email with since the day you connected?  Are there connections that don’t return your phone calls, emails or texts?  What about the people you have asked for help, information or an introduction, do they come through for you?

Lately I have been wondering why I am connected to people who don’t want to play in the sandbox with me.  It could be that I have done something or said something that has alienated me, and yet maybe I have done nothing wrong.  Like most people it take a lot to go in and disconnect a connection.  Not that it is technically hard, but it is emotionally hard to make that decision.

I have taken to going through my list of connections and asking myself if we should stay connected.  The answer is easier when I have asked for anything and I get a zero response.  When I may have connected with them because of their role within a company, industry or field but that has now changed, I take a second look to see if it makes sense to stay connected.  I ask myself if we were not connected, would I be sending them an invitation to connect today?

Some folks I realize are into collecting connections.  They are shooting for a large number of “followers” to show how vital they are, or how much people need their words of wisdom.  The greater number of connections gives them a good feeling about themselves.  I am not one of these people.

Several months ago I realized I had a large amount of people who I used to work with at a former employer that is now out of business.  In some ways, connecting in LinkedIn was our way to remain together.  There is even an alumni group that many joined too.  Yet I connected to obtain future consulting work from the company this particular group of people went to work for.  While most returned emails, and phone calls, and a few even met with me face to face, their focus was different from the one we had at the old company.  I didn’t see us ever working together, so I sent each of them a message asking if we should stay connected.  About half said yes and the other half didn’t reply.  So I disconnected from the ones that didn’t reply, and I have yet to hear from them

So I think it makes sense to sort through and weed out your LinkedIn contacts.  The clutter often makes it hard to find the people you want to work with and the people who you delete no longer have to read your daily updates.  Sounds like a win-win to me!



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