General Question

Carol's avatar

Does Linkedin require reciprocity?

Asked by Carol (711 points ) December 28th, 2011

If someone invites me to be listed on their linkedin page and I accept, does that necessarily mean that they are put on mine?

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9 Answers

CaptainHarley's avatar

No, I don’t think it does.

plethora's avatar

No, you have to invite them to yours. If you find any geniune use for LinkedIn, please let me know. I cannot understand the value of “linking up” with a bunch of “heads” that I will never even know.

I confess that I have never worked it though…for that reason. Would be interested in your experience

Bellatrix's avatar

That’s been my experience too @Plethora. I get a lot of invites from people I don’t know or people I don’t want to connect with. I would also be interested in how other people use the site.

Carol's avatar

I think the point of linkedin is/was to put trusted business sources, those you’ve actually worked with, on your page in order to share your resources with others you trust. Let’s say I have a positive experience with my dentist (which, by zee way, has not yet occurred.) I might list that person so that if other’s I’ve worked with are checking out my connections and looking for a dentist, voila. They may even write to me to ask what my experiences with the dentist have been to date.

I don’t think it was initially conceived as a social networking site but most people there treat it as such. In fact, linkedin seems to be moving in the direction of pushing connections between people….do you know this one or that one, attempting to rip names from your address book etc. Many treat it like a popularity contest, listing 500 + names. Ridiculous.

But there are the linked in groups which I find interesting….at least some of them. One can participate in discussions with those in specific fields. For instance, as psychologist, I’m a member of a psychoanalytic discussion group. I’ve asked various questions regarding literature in my field and about personal therapeutic experiences with patients. I’ve gotten some very interesting responses. I can also enter into a private discussion with someone about their rationale for doing one thing as opposed to another. If I’m impressed with the responses of a person in another state, I mioght have occasion to make a referral of a patient of mine who has moved to that area.

I almost forgot, some of these groups with common interests actually do meet.
Incidentally, you’ve linked up with my head but its doubtful that we’ll “know” one another.
How awful is that? You might write something that enriches my life (longshort, I know, but it could and does happen.)

jaytkay's avatar

I’m not sure what “listed on their linkedin page” means, but if you “connect” with someone on LinkedIn (like “friending” on Facebook), yes, it is reciprocal.

But you cannot look at another user’s page and see all their connections. You can only see your connections and how they relate to that user.

As for the utility of LinkedIn, I work with an attorney and he uses it to give people strangers some assurance he is legitimate. “You don’t know me but you can see a few hundred people are willing to be connected to me, and if you see mutual acquaintances you can ask them about me”.

srmorgan's avatar

LinkedIn has many useful services:

It is used by recruiters and headhunters to find possible candidates when doing searches. Your LinkedIn profile shows your title, current and former employers, job responsibilities, skills and other qualifications. This is available to premium users of the site, not the ordinary rank-and-file.

2. It is useful to job hunters trying to find someone in a given company, If you are researching a company you CAN try to find someone in your network who is employed there to get information about the company, company history and culture and maybe even some information about who can be contacted as part of your job search.

3. It allows you to track companies so that you might see if an opening in a local company has opened up or who they may have recently hired.

4. It has an alumni facility to see if you can link up with people that you might have worked with. This can also be useful in a job search when you are trying to build a network

5. Another poster has mentioned the use of groups. You can belong to a professional or location group and post questions to that specific group. I belong to a group centered on my place of residence. The group has held several network sessions in the last year for both job-seekers and people looking for business contacts.

6. You can ask questions of your network. I had an interview last May in an industry that I knew nothing about. I was looking for key accounting metrics or measures used in this industry. I got about 15 responses from people in the field as well as CPA’s about common measures of performance. Helped immensely in the interview although I did not get the job.

It all depends on what you make of it and how much exploration you do of the site’s features.

Jeruba's avatar

My experience with LinkedIn is that it’s reciprocal: a two-way link. The person appears as a first-degree connection on my list, and I appear on theirs.

I accept connections only from those for whom I am willing to vouch professionally. To me it’s the same as a referral: I’m staking my own reputation on those I connect with. I do not accept connection requests from people I wouldn’t recommend for a job or a professional relationship. If I know their work and I don’t think highly of it, we don’t connect.

I’ve received LinkedIn requests from some people whom I know only socially, and I tell them that I don’t have a basis for a professional connection with them. I suggest a social network if they want to connect that way.

Of course it goes without saying that I don’t link to strangers.

Bellatrix's avatar

Good question Carol and informative answers from all. This is not my question but thank you. I have learned from the information posted here.

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