My very first personal affair with LinkedIn started way back in 2006. The idea of building up a professional network, or “adding people” to a database online resonated with me. Better than collecting business cards, I thought. The prospect of having my “CV online” for my network to search and contact for potential career opportunities was tempting.
I took all my business cards, email contacts, and started sending invites. Within my first two years on LinkedIn, my network quickly grew past 500+ connections.
Over the years, I have spent considerable time and effort to build up my professional network on LinkedIn. I’ve had slightly over 1000 carefully selected contacts in my network. Therefore, you may wonder why I have left LinkedIn?
There were three key reasons for my decision to leave the network.
The first reason was most the most significant for me. I asked myself a question: “What would you miss if you would have left LinkedIn today?” And to my own surprise, I struggled to come up with a sound answer.
The second reason was also significant. Over the years, I’ve seen LinkedIn as a great “hire” and “to get hired” tool. I had this impression that it was created as a tool with having recruiters in mind. Over the years however, as the user base grew, LinkedIn lost its identity. Is it a tool for recruiters? Is it a CRM? Is it a sales tool? Is it a “Facebook for professionals”? What is LinkedIn for?
The third reason was somewhat a personal preference. To my taste, there was not much going on there. For news articles, feedly is a better tool. For seeing who’s doing what, and for personal views, Facebook and Twitter were much better tools. I was fed up with all those calls for “keep LinkedIn professional”. Oh no, wait, great! Someone just sent me an invite to connect! … followed by a useless sales pitch. Really, this was the time to say thank you, I had enough.
Add to this the fact that now LinkedIn is owned by Microsoft. Did I trust Microsoft enough to allow them to own my contact list?
End of the affair.