Linkedin Etiquette

What’s the standard protocol of messaging strangers on Linkedin for possible job opportunities?

I’ve only been out of school for a year and half so I don’t know all of the does and don’ts when networking. What’s the proper etiquette when messaging people on Linkedin for jobs? Is this something that is ok to do? Or is something that will give you a bad reputation?

Thanks in advance for the help!

I would proceed with caution. Lets say you are interested in working for company x. Here is a list of possible actions.

Best: someone in your first degree network works there and you ask them some questions about the position and if they thought it would be a good fit for you.

Good: someone in your second degree network works at company x (IE friend of friend) and you ask your first degree network connection (your actual friend or connection) for an introduction so you could ask if you are possibly a good fit for company x.

OK: you reach out to directly to someone in your second degree network, saying you are a friend of a friend, tell them of your interest in working for company x, and ask them to take a look at your work to give their opinion on if you might be qualified.

Not Good: you reach out to second and third degree connections directly and ask them to recommend you for the job.

Bad: you carpet bomb everyone that works at company x with invites telling them why they should hire you. They will probably talk about it… I’ve seen it happen and the results are not good.

It’s important to consider how you develop that first impression. For example, if the director from your desired company will be speaking soon at an event, it’d be more impressive if you establish a connection there. Or maybe they recently posted an article or you read an interview of them that really spoke to you.

Basically, you want to be careful about having people remember you as “that guy who’s looking for a job.” Find some common ground to help create connections with others and then work from there… or have a friend do the connecting for you. :slight_smile:

Perfect! Thanks guys this is exactly what I was looking for!One more question, what about reaching out to former school Alumni and professors that you’ve only crossed paths with a handful of times? Is it ok to reach out to them?

Yes, definitely. Just keep it polite and professional.

Awesome! Thanks Mike! This is a huge help, I really appreciate it!