Sorry, I’m not a LION.

No, I’m not talking about this majestic lady – Queen of the Jungle, I’m talking about LI-ONs, Linked In Open Networkers.  People who pledge to connect to everyone on Linked In who sends them an invitation.

You can normally tell a LION by a profile that reads LION or by their membership in a LION group.  Some people make the mistake of assuming that someone that has 500+ connections is by default a LION, and that can be a costly mistake.  It can result in a DNK or I Do Not Know this person response.  Get too many of these and your Linked In privileges can be restricted.

The Laws of the Social Jungle are Relationship Based

Successful networking, whether it is face to face, or profile to profile in cyberspace is about creating relationships.  Once the relationship is formed, then you can move on to real conversations whether it is in the business world or the personal realm.  When forming relationships, it is important to understand how the other person chooses to communicate and share information.  It also helps to understand the boundaries or personal space preferences of the other person and adapt your behavior to theirs.

Listed below are my personal boundaries.  That does not mean they will be the same for you, but they might give you some ideas when you form your own.

Linked In

  • Inclusive – CorePurpose, my company, has a linked in page to share information.   I also share ideas occasionally on a number of Linked In groups including Lead Change, MIT Enterprise Forum Phoenix, Continuous Innovation, Corporate Planning & Global Industry Segmentation, Forbes Woman, and Marketing Partners
  • Exclusive – I limit my Linked In connections to people I actually know and have done business with.  Having been on Linked In from almost the very beginning, I still have quite a few, but every single one is someone I know and can personally recommend to others.  This enables the true power of Linked In – quality introductions.

Facebook

  • Inclusive – CorePurpose, my company, has a Facebook page.  On it you can find blog posts, articles, and links that I choose to share.  Facebook pages are highly inclusive.  Like web pages or blogs, anyone can choose to see them or follow them.
  • Exclusive – My personal profile by definition is more exclusive.  If Facebook is for friends, then my personal choice is to keep it to friends and not connect to every person who finds my profile and wants to connect.  I want to know what my friends are doing – and to do that, I intentionally keep the group smaller so I can actually find them in the crowd.

Twitter

  • Inclusive – On Twitter, I am at my most inclusive.  I look for like minded people and I auto follow back the people who follow me. But more importantly, when people engage and talk to me with @mentions or non- automated DM’s, I engage with them and join the conversation. 
  • Exclusive – My exclusivity comes into play when people wear out their welcome.  Spammers, scantily clad avatars, porn, and hateful people are quickly unfollowed or even blocked.  I also go in once each month and clean up my accounts,  You can see how I do it here,

It was an article on CNN.com,  Defriending Can Bruise Your ‘Digital Ego’, that got me thinking about all this.  You see, I probably was “this one woman”.  The message is one that I use frequently when contacted by people on Linked In that I do not know.  It is not meant to be unkind, or rude,  Just realistic.  If I do not know you, I can not recommend you, and that is how I use that particular tool.  ‘I only connect with people I know, and hopefully our paths will cross one day.’  I am not that hard to connect with and engage in other areas.  Really – just Google me.

Thanks for stopping by.  Stay tuned…

Joan Koerber-Walker

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