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How Are You Killing Your LinkedIn Reputation?

LinkedIn is a never ending source of inspiration for content. I saw a post today that just shocked me. I am not going to share that link or tell you about the content (not directly any way), but I will tell you my first thought was "well, your reputation as a sales professional on LinkedIn just took a massive hit."

I participated in an Ignite event a couple years ago and put together this brief video called "LinkedIn Good Ideas & Bad."

Today I will share some more ideas and be a bit more "concrete" about content to avoid.


Here's the thing. You are not Howard Stern. Howard makes a living being a shock jock. The more he offends people, the more he galvanizes his audience. If it is your plan to become the next Howard Stern, then go ahead, say the most outlandish controversial things you can think of. Share content that will deliberately offend people and cause reaction. Otherwise, keep LinkedIn professional, it ain't Facebook.

Unsure what to avoid? Politics, religion, most pop culture. Here is the exception. Every rule has an exception. If you are going to use one of these items to illustrate or educate on a LEGITIMATE BUSINESS topic, then it is useful. However, simply stating your opinion on these topics will alienate a key portion of your audience. For example, The President Of The United States, Will never gain universal approval. I took a quick look to see who had the highest approval rating in the history of the United States and it looks like JFK, was the winner at just over 70%. Which means 30% did NOT approve. Don't give up 30% of your audience. It's not worth it. Learn to accept people's differences and leverage them for success. At least, that is what Stephen Covey (my current favorite author) teaches us.


This is a shout out to Mica Gadhia and Sean Jackson for their fantastic LinkedIn Podcast

I learn something every time I listen to it ( and I have now listened to every episode). In one of their episodes Mica calls Sean a "Linkhole." It is done with great humor, and also has a real point behind it. Everyone know the whole "do unto others" quote? Good, keep that in mind and you won't be considered a Linkhole.


You would think that I don't need to tell a bunch of grown ups that these topics are not a bright idea. But check out this video to see some of the outlandish stuff people say and do on LinkedIn and their profile.

A brief footnote about arguing. Having a passionate discussion with someone who differs in opinion of you is healthy and can be a great learning experience for all parties. Insulting someone or attacking or using foul language is a major damage hit to your online brand. Don't do it.


Most of you reading this are not the offenders, but maybe some of you have done one or two of the items I listed here (full confession, I have done a few, and they were painful lessons). I have three calls to action for you today:

CALL TO ACTION NUMBER 1: Think before you act, or post, or comment or share. Think about the value of what you are about to do, to your audience.

CALL TO ACTION NUMBER 2: Share this with at least one connection that has broken a couple of rules. Share it with them in the spirit of "Hey Bob, check out this article, I really liked it and I think you could get some great info from it."

CALL TO ACTION NUMBER 3: Contact me when you have questions, want to share ideas or you think I can help mike@mikeshelah.com & 443-808-1670

I appreciate all comments and feedback, let's begin a conversation and learn from one another, thank you.

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Mike Shelah Consulting - LinkedIn Training
Mike Shelah - Founder - LinkedIn Consultant
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Phone: 443-808-1670