Okay, I am going to vent a little. I am a recruiter. I work for a highly recognizable organization. I am well connected. I know people who know people. You know that, right? Of course you do! That is why you reached out to me. Is that right? Heck, I don’t know!!!

I have to tell you I receive probably at least 30 Linkedin invitations a week. That could seem like a small number to some, or a large number to others. I would venture to say that 80% of the people that reach out to me I have never heard of or don’t know! Even worse, you have not given me a REASON WHY you want to connect.

Let me give you some advice. STOP!! Please, for the love of God, STOP! Whatever advice you have been given, you aren’t listening closely enough!

Yes, knowing people is definitely the key to getting a job. Getting your resume in front of the right people is a key component in avoiding the “black hole”. That being said, if you don’t give me a reason of why you want to connect, I have absolutely NO desire to connect with you. No desire!

Tell me anything! Tell me you like my background. Tell me you like my blog. You can even tell me you are interested in a position within my organization. To send a blank invitation with no reason is like SPAM!

“I am trying to grow my network” doesn’t fly with me either. So, basically you are telling me that you really don’t care to get to know me. You just want to use me for a connection. Try a little harder, please!

This week I did an experiment. I have had 23 Linkedin invitations from people I don’t know. I sent back 23 e-mails asking each and every one of them WHY they wanted to connect. Do you know how many responded to my e-mail? Drum roll, please. Zero!! I was polite, and said I would be glad to get to know them. I asked them how they heard about me and why would they want to connect?

Another thing, just because I work at XYZ company, don’t assume I can help you with a specific role! When I worked at Dell, there were hundreds of recruiters. If you are going after a large organization, make sure you aren’t just connecting to connect.

Have purpose. Respect others’ time. Research roles, the organization, and the person with whom you are trying to connect. If you give me a reason to connect, I will almost 100% of the time connect with you. I am all about paying it forward.

Thank you for listening to my rant and I hope you take this advice to heart. It will help you!