I’ve been a member for some time now of the online ‘networking network’, LinkedIn, but have not made use of it. Basic membership is free, which might explain in part my lack of action. Today I decided to take a more active approach – prompted by a discussion on The Networkers’ Network on Ryze.
I’m still a bit mystified about how LinkedIn works, but this is what happened today. Using a downloadable tool LinkedIn provide, I initiated a LinkedIn search of my Outlook database and found that there were over 80 people in my addressbook who are already LinkedIn users. I then used the online facility to send a personally customised invitation to each of them to join my network on LinkedIn. By this evening, my LinkedIn network had grown from 3 to 27 – and they are directly connected to another 1400 or so!
Most of the names on the list of people already in LinkedIn and in my address book did not really surprise me, but I noticed others, good networkers, who are not members yet and may not really know about it, so I can see some potential if it takes off.
The basic premise of LinkedIn seems to be to establish a mutually supportive network of professionals in various fields. It will be interesting to see how it works.