Hey 1st Connections… yeah, I’m talking to you!
We’re about to hit some pretty hard times. Projected unemployment numbers are predicted to hit 20% or more in the not-too-distant future. There are going to be people reaching out to you for help. If you’re a first connection of theirs, you’ve got to respond.
We all have 1st connections on LinkedIn® we’ve never met, never even spoken to. But why did we connect in the first place? We connected for potential business opportunities or because we may need each other someday. Well, the day may be here. It could be you, it may be me or it could be both of us. We need to be there for each other.
It should go without saying that if one of your 1st connections reaches out, even if you’ve never spoken before, you should respond appropriately. Yes, everyone is busy, but you should be able to give a few minutes of your time even if it’s on the commute to/from work or another unconventional time.
If someone asks you to introduce them to one of your 1st connections and you don’t know either party, there are three things you can do:
- Ignore them… this non-response is rude, unprofessional and selfish… it could be you asking for help some day
- Respond that you’d love to help, but you really don’t know the person they’re asking about… better than answer #1… at least you responded, but you can do better. Give it a shot. Reach out to the requested person. What’s the worst that can happen? You’ll be ignored or told “no” … sadly, being ignored is most likely
- Be there for someone in need. Offer a 15-minute phone call to get to know the person a bit. Give advice, offer guidance or just give the person validation and motivation to keep moving forward. Then, if you feel good about the person, make the introduction. Isn’t this the right thing to do?
It’s about professionalism and courtesy
Now I know some of you are thinking of the people who reach out to you to try to sell you their services. I’m not talking about them, but it still doesn’t hurt to be courteous. I’ve been receiving a lot of LinkedIn messages from people wanting to help me grow my business. I already have a coach and I don’t need their services currently. Which is exactly how I respond, with a “thanks for the offer”, and it takes about 30-seconds.
LinkedIn is a networking tool built to connect people for business opportunities and to assist each other when needed. If you’re on LinkedIn and you connect with someone, you’re literally telling people you’re open to a networking relationship. You owe it to yourself and your connections to be responsive and/or available when requested.
If you want help identifying the steps of the process to help you plan for winning your next job opportunity, click here to receive a short guide entitled “The Sher Process to Your Next Job”.