Submitted by zcardch on
My company has a global intranet with employee profiles, contacts, etc. I continue to get Linked-In notices from our employees. Why would I fill up my linked-in contacts with internal employees? I already have an internal avenue to network with them. I prefer my Linked-in contacts to be with external persons. Ideas to handle this? Respectfully turn them down and explain, or just link with them and be done?
To me, your question sounds
To me, your question sounds like this: "Why would I want to build a network in the easiest way possible, with people I already work with?"
Like most things, the question is not about the value today, but the value in the future. What happens when you (or they) leave or get laid off and you no longer have easy access to their contact information?
There's no downside to connecting with them
I can't think of a single reason why you wouldn't accept the connection. There's no downside, and there are many upsides.
First, not everyone will see it your way and failing to accept could damage the relationship, especially if you're active with others.
Second, people don't stay with the same company forever, and as people move around it's a connection that will last through turnover.
Third, you might be surprised at how many connections you'll find with outside parties that know someone you work with. Your network is your network, and there will be overlap between the connections that you wouldn't expect.
The question I'd ask isn't "Why would I fill up my linked-in contacts with internal employees? I already have an internal avenue to network with them." but the exact opposite -- "why would I use an internal network when there is a perfectly good external network that includes everyone?" If you want to keep active on the internal network there are probably good reasons -- maybe better for dialogue related to internal matters -- but I don't see any reason to reject them on the external network. I'm sure they won't start sending you work-related messaged through LinkedIn.
Purpose drives action
I'm guessing you're young, or haven't had to search hard for a job. There's an old saying, "dig your well before you're thirsty." Every single unemployed person with whom I've spoken about this, regrets not building a better network when they could.
However this may not be important to you. What goals do you have, and can any of those goals be served by having a large network of people who know your abilities, and whose abilities you know? ...and whose connections you might be able to reach through them?
Without a good purpose, it'll be hard for you to act intentionally.
I suggest you just link with everyone you like or respect, regardless of where they are, because at some point you'll want to reach them and you won't always have their correct email address.
I agree (strongly) with the
I agree (strongly) with the above two posts. In addition, accepting the invitations is a positive message (I value you) to those people and can help your interactions with them now. It can also be a source of information (watching what they post), helpful in maintaining the relationship. I have learned some useful things about what's going on in my own company based on posts others in the company have made on LinkedIn.