This is my personal view and this article applies to any professional networking sites like LinkedIn.
I remember joining LinkedIn in 2007, I joined when I was doing my engineering bachelors. So far all through my career, I have earned lots of values through LinkedIn, because of the connects. Every connect in LinkedIn, is the actual asset I have earned in my career. Thats how I see it. Of Course even I got all my job oppurtunities through LinkedIn connects.
The more the number of connects, more the number of feeds to read everyday. So what you really learn, depends on what/who you follow. (The same applies to Twitter/ any other feed streaming networking sites). I almost get to know about what is happening in my technology industry through the feeds shared by my connects. Just by following my feeds I am able to keep myself up to date about latest happenings in my industry, so I keep reviewing whom I follow every month (on an average).
Because LinkedIn has grown so popular and also nowadays people use technologies to automate the connection requests, it is indeed important to follow a discipline. That way I am able to achieve the following things:
1. Every feed becomes valuable to read, worth spending time to go through them.
2. Avoid feed spams – Yes, we all know people have started using LinkedIn like facebook. I know, you know what I mean ! So its absolutely important to understand that, there is a minimum spam we can bare everyday.
3. Give focus to my profession connects – At least know how many connects you have, who your connects are and what do they do.
So how do I achieve ?
Few LinkedIn policies I follow :
1. Connects who I personally know, met, admire/inspire, worked with.. stays forever (Obviously)
2. Technology connects – Always stays forever (Indeed I respect them, I learn a lot by following them)
3. New Technology connect requests whom I have never met in person – Will always be accepted. But reviewed every few months.
4. Recruiters – Will accept all the time & Will stay all the time, if Communicates/Sends a message within a weeks time after connection is accepted.
5. All other connects – Same applies as mentioned in Point 4, will also review them whenever possible.
Technology, especially internet is no more a fantasy playground. It absolutely dominates our everyday life, at-least in our career. So its important to efficiently use it and attain the actual purpose of it. !