- Be complete with your profile. At the bare minimum your profile should include a professional image, your current position and 3-5 previous positions, your last school, and a link to your website or blog if you have one. These pieces of information will help present and former colleagues locate you and verify your identity in order to connect with you on LinkedIn.
- Be personable. When you request a connection, add a personal message for each potential contact. Did you have a class with this person in college? Mention the class and/or the professor to jog their memory and a brief note where you are now. Is this someone you currently work with? Add a quick note about your desire to connect with your colleagues for future networking possibilities (and request a recommendation once your connection is complete).
- Be appropriate with your recommendations. Only request recommendations from those who can give you a fair recommendation on the work you have done. Similarly, only give recommendations for those who you can fairly recommend for the work they have done.
- Be responsive. Answer messages in a timely fashion. Unless you plan to check LinkedIn daily for new messages, check your settings to ensure you are receiving emails for Introductions and InMail (the LinkedIn version of email). This way you will receive these messages conveniently within your email inbox and can respond right away. Each message from LinkedIn will contain a link directly to the page on LinkedIn where you can view it, accept the connection request or reply to the message.
- Be professional. Interact with everyone on LinkedIn in a professional manner.
DISCUSSION: What is your best LinkedIn etiquette tip?