Call me old-fashioned, but I like to know the people who are in my network. And if we’ve never met, I’d like to know there’s some reason why we’re getting in touch.
I don’t see the purpose in a sprawling list of LinkedIn contacts unless I feel like I could actually ping one of those people with a career question, meet up if I was in his or her city, or have some sense of the value we add to each other’s networks.
It’s not that I’m against connecting with new people: It’s just that the generic note that throws me every time.
And it’s because I’m always left with three questions:
- Who are you?
- How did you find me?
- Why do you want to connect?
These answer-less questions usually lead to an invite sitting around in my inbox for awhile, before, inevitably, being deleted.
However, those questions right there create a simple three-line formula that’ll make strangers much more likely to accept your invitation.
Let’s do a comparison.