LinkedIn and General Networking Question: Can I Reconnect With People I Haven’t Seen in Years?

December 30, 2009

I have many contacts from years ago. Can I still contact them?

Yes, you can always reconnect with them. Don’t feel bad that it is from such a long time ago. They didn’t take action either. They probably have the same hesitation as you do.

Especially this time of the year is a good moment to do that.

When you reconnect with them, always make your message personal. Refer to the time you spent together, the projects you worked on or the time in college. Use the name in your invitation message you were known by the time you knew them. This especially applies to women who now go by the name of their husband.

To your success !


PS: this is an excerpt from the book How to REALLY use LinkedIn (of in het Nederlands: Hoe LinkedIn nu ECHT gebruiken). Make sure you download your FREE light version.


LinkedIn Question: What will happen when I remove a connection on LinkedIn?

December 23, 2009

A question that is asked in our presentations and training courses a lot is: What will happen when I remove a connection on LinkedIn? Will he be notified?

There are occasions you want to remove some of your contacts. The reasons might be that something happened between you and another person, that you are changing jobs or that you are reorienting yourself and don’t want to be associated with a certain industry anymore. Personally only the first reason would be reason enough for me to remove a connection. In the other cases you might never know who they know or who can help you in your new situation.

Before I show you how to remove a connection, let ‘s start with a question that many people have: “I don’t want to be connected anymore to that person, but I don’t want him to know that because I don’t want to get in trouble with him.”

The answer is: no, the person you remove as a connection won’t be notified.

These are the steps to remove someone:
1. In the left menu, click “Contacts”.
2. In the new page you will see at the top right hand side: “Remove Connections”.
3. Choose the connections you want remove and click the button “Remove connections”.
The connections will not be notified that they have been removed. They will be added to your list of “Imported Contacts” in case you want to re-invite them later.

To your success !


PS: this is an excerpt from the book How to REALLY use LinkedIn (of in het Nederlands: Hoe LinkedIn nu ECHT gebruiken). Make sure you download your FREE light version.

How to Use LinkedIn to Find a New Job explained in 3.12 minutes

December 16, 2009

I’m very excited to have had the opportunity to team up with the great guys of Instruxion to make a small  movie about “How to use LinkedIn to find a new job” (3.12 minutes, in English).

It’s already for a while on the website of the book How to REALLY use LinkedIn, but I haven’t mentioned it here yet.

Also check out the other cool movies they made on the website of Animated Explanations!

Have a great networking day !


Jan Vermeiren is the founder of Networking Coach and author of “How to REALLY use LinkedIn” (in Dutch: “Hoe LinkedIn nu ECHT gebruiken“). Click on the links of the books to get a free light version.

LinkedIn – Twitter integration: pros and cons

December 9, 2009

Last month LinkedIn integrated Twitter on the Profile page and on the Home Page.

Before you get too excited (or wonder what to do with it), I want to share some thoughts with you.

Pros of the Twitter integration:

– When someone looks at your Profile and likes it, they immediately can click on your Twitter ID and start following you. This is a benefit because sometimes it is hard to find someone on Twitter (despite the search engine). Why? Not everybody uses their own name or when they do they don’t always use the same picture as on LinkedIn (and then try to figure out which John Smith it is). Of course most of the times it is not so hard to do, but all shortcuts that make our life easier are good.

– You only have to post something once, instead of posting it on Twitter and then go to LinkedIn and post the same message there again. Again it makes our life easier.

Cons of the Twitter integration:

– Some topics people post on Twitter are pretty personal. Not everybody on a professional networking website is interested in them (and sometimes it is better that they don’t know what their connections are posting; that being said: be aware that everything you post online might be found by your professional contacts so always think before you write!)

– Twitter has another pace than LinkedIn. Some people tweet 20 times a day. LinkedIn has a much slower pace and people use it in a different way. This sometimes frustrates younger people who like the speed of Facebook and Twitter more. But remember it is a website for professional networking. And that has another pace, whether you like it or not.

Solution to benefit from the advantages, but avoid the disadvantages:

As I wrote in my book “How to REALLY use LinkedIn” (free light version available in English and Dutch) there are free services that allow you to post to different websites at once (so it is not limited to LinkedIn and Twitter, but also Facebook, Plaxo, MysSpace and many others).

For every message you post, you can tick off/on the websites where you want it to appear, giving you more control and save some time as well.

These are examples of such services:

To your (social) networking success !


Networking Tip: associate with the right people in every category of your life

December 5, 2009

Last year I wrote about Denis Waitley’s quote that we are a direct reflection of the 5 people we associate with the most.

Let me elaborate a little bit more on this in this post.

I already gave the tip to think about your goals first.

It’s a good idea to think about several aspects of your life.

One of the ways to look at it is following the 7 categories from Carl Van de Velde (from his book “10 stappen naar succes en geluk”):
– Money and Career
– Family and relationships
– Health
– Enjoying and fun
– Material things
– Personal Development
– Contribution to society

Now think about who you could associate with in every category. Someone who can bring you much fun and joy, might not be the right person to associate with when it comes to money and career.

An important remark I want to make is that you don’t necessarily have to meet these people in person. Of course it helps a lot when you are able to spend time with them, but don’t let that hold you back.

For example:

– If you want to take your health to the next level, who do you think are healthy people? Who in your current environment? But also: who is a role model? Maybe it is Jane Fonda. Then buy a DVD from her. In this way you also associate with her.

– If you want to work on personal development, think about a person who inspires you. Maybe it is Anthony Robbins. Then buy a CD from him and listen to it in your car. And listen to it again. This is also a way of associating with someone.

But maybe you don’t know where to start or you can’t think of any role models.

Then tap into the power of your network !

Share your goal and ask them who they think of, who they can recommend and maybe even connect you with.

To your success !


6 Ways How LinkedIn Groups Can Benefit Event Organizers, Meeting Planners and Association Managers

December 2, 2009

Many (professional) organisations have a hard time to keep their organisation interesting enough for their members and are also continuously looking to attract new members.

Starting your own LinkedIn Group can both add to the value of the membership and attract more members in many ways:

1. An online presence next to events will help members to keep in touch between meetings.

2. Members who can’t attend many meetings will still be able to contact each other.

3. The LinkedIn Group is an extra platform to help each other and to discuss trends.

4. Some potential members might have never heard of your organisation. They can get in touch with you and become a member of your organisation after finding the LinkedIn Group.

5. It is a good and free alternative to a forum on your own website. Many organisations have a hard time building a successful community because they don’t have a critical mass of people who participate in discussions. As a result people won’t visit the forum anymore, the negative spiral continues and they also hardly ever visit the website anymore. Since people use LinkedIn also to connect with other people and to build their network with other people than the members of your organisation they keep using LinkedIn and once in a while visit the LinkedIn Group.

6. Free membership of the LinkedIn Group might generate interest in a (paid) membership for events.

To your success !


PS: this is an excerpt from the book How to REALLY use LinkedIn (of in het Nederlands: Hoe LinkedIn nu ECHT gebruiken). Make sure you download your FREE light version.

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