When should you unfriend a LinkedIn connection? Almost never. I have only had cause to remove/delete two people since I joined LinkedIn several years ago.
Who and Why
The first was a U.S. national who kept sending me messages about finding him jobs in the Middle East. Over and over. I don’t recruit for any clients in the Middle East and I don’t recruit in his field or industry. I told him this. The messages continued.
I wrote a snarky blog post about someone who behaved just like him,
probably definitely the funniest post I’ve ever written. However, I started feeling bad about having written a snarky post about another incredibly annoying human being and took it down. I disconnected from him. He stopped sending me messages.
The second was a person who was scraping my content and reposting it online. I asked him to stop scraping. He didn’t. I reported him to Google as a content scraper and disconnected from him on LinkedIn. I don’t like unrepentant content scrapers.
That’s it. Unfriending can be a bridge burning act of rejection. I save it for egregious behavior.
An Alternative to Unfriending
I do, however, hide people from my LinkedIn Pulse stream if I don’t find their posts useful. They don’t know I’ve hidden them. I keep my stream interesting to me. We both benefit from being able to contact each other through LinkedIn and from sharing our networks. It’s all good.
Consider hiding before you unfriend. Don’t make frenemies you don’t need.
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