Do you get frustrated by seemingly random requests to Connect on LinkedIn?
You're not alone. Most of these requests come from recruiters - Here's the most common reasons they want to Connect, and why you should usually accept.
Like a Job Search Every Day
It's important to understand where recruiters are coming from. They're performing a necessary service, and trying to put food on the table for their families. Contrary to popular belief, they aren't sitting around all day thinking of ways to annoy you.
- Everyone knows how frustrating a job search can be
- Sending out resumes
- Emails that never get returned
- Online forms that seem to send your info into outer space
Now imagine doing that every day.
Recruiting is just job searching in reverse except you never get to stop.
Recruiters are always on the lookout for talented professionals who are a good fit for their client's needs. Their job is made even harder by the fact that most people don't like to advertise the fact that they're looking for a new job lest the boss find out and fire them before they have something better lined up.
One solution for the problem is to constantly be networking with people in their industry. Reach out to everyone and a small percentage of them will be looking for a new job right now.
If you're happy in your current job you might find these requests annoying. But you'll be glad you accepted them if you unexpectedly get laid off next week. So take a deep breath and click the 'Accept' button the next time you get a Connection request from someone you don't know on LinkedIn.
Here's the REAL reasons recruiters contact random people on LinkedIn.
1. You're Being Considered for a Job Opening
This is the best case scenario if you're currently looking for a new job. And it's a nice ego boost if you're not looking right now.
It's possible that a recruiter found you using a LinkedIn search, or maybe you were referred by a friend or coworker.
It doesn't matter how they found you - Now they need you to accept their Connection request to begin building a relationship with you. With any luck you'll have found yourself a great new job.
2. A Recruiter Works in Your Industry
A recruiter is only as good as their network.
It's common for them to always be reaching out to new people in your industry. In this case they don't have a specific job for you right now, but want to have a list of qualified candidates available for future job openings they need to fill.
Recruiters in this group can't help you get a job right now. Accepting these connection requests are important because they allow you to begin building relationships with recruiters which could help you down the road.
3. The Recruiter Wants to Connect with Your Connections
Some recruiters will be perfectly honest about this, and others will try to hide what they're up to. If they're honest and up front, thiere's no reason no to accept their connection request.
Relationships with recruiters are built off of mutual respect and reciprocity. Helping a recruiter connect with someone you know is a good way to begin building a relationship with them. It costs you almost nothing and you never know when that connection will come in handy.
4. Increase Their LinkedIn Network Size
Some people see this as a spammy way to operate on LinkedIn. But the sad truth is that network size is important. Some people think it's important enough to resort to spamming random people with Connection requests.
If this seems distasteful to you, go ahead and ignore these requests and go about your day.
My advice, connect with these people anyway.
They usually have a large LinkedIn network, and connecting with them will increase your visibility on the site. It's a win-win.
Remember, your career is defined by the relationships you build.