As an entrepreneur, networking plays an important role in building your business. Even if you could do it all on your own, you would still need to network, and the sooner you start building your network, the better.
Building a network of entrepreneurs both in and out of your field starts to tell a story about who you are professionally, what opportunities you are seeking, and what inquiries you may have interest in hearing. You can connect with everyone from industry thought leaders and influencers to potential partners and clients. First making the connections and then following your connections puts you in the position to reach out proactively so that you are prepared when a perceived opportunity arises. The best networkers research their connections to understand them better so that they can take the right action, at the right time, with the right contact.
What does it tell you when someone does not accept your connection? Maybe they did not get to it yet… that’s unlikely. What is likely, is that they researched you, checked your profile, and not accepted your connection. This can give you valuable insight as well.
Your hopeful contact chose not to accept your connection which can mean multiple things. I’ve listed these red flags in the order of likelihood based on my experience in not connecting.
- Spammy looking profile (no photo, few if any connections, red flags are going off when googling you)
- Your approach may have been at the wrong time or if you sent a message it may have been off target (were you soliciting first or were you bringing something to the table first
- You may be perceived as a direct competitor and potential threat
- They may see themselves as a valuable contact and not want to lend you the credibility of the connection
BONUS TIP: If you didn’t make the connection the first time around, and you believe it is an important connection to make, don’t be afraid to try again, build your value, pick your timing, adjust your message, and try again.
Personally, I accept almost all of the connection requests I receive, but I definitely avoid #1 almost always (sometimes it’s hard to tell so I give the benefit of the doubt)… so with that, please feel free to leave your comments and questions and I look forward to connecting with you!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Sener Korkusuz is the Founder and CEO of EarthSkater.com, dedicated to helping small business owners succeed online with unbeatable web design, web hosting, and online store service.