By Charlie Balk With over 300 million users, LinkedIn is a social network that can't be ignored. Even so, many people tell me that they don't like LinkedIn because it's "weird." While I will agree that it's a pretty strange network, keep in mind that by avoiding LinkedIn, you're missing out on an opportunity. So, rather than letting LinkedIn's quirkiness be a deterrent, join me in celebrating it.
Here are the top four weirdest things about LinkedIn.
1. You get notifications about everything.
If anyone does anything on LinkedIn, you'll probably (okay, definitely) hear about it. If you're not savvy enough to navigate the settings section, you'll be stuck getting daily emails about that one guy who you never even meant to connect with in the first place. Tip: Go into "Privacy and Settings," click "Communications" to change this.
By the way, like or congratulate someone on their anniversary or promotion (which you better believe LinkedIn will prompt you to do), and you'll be getting notifications until the next harvest moon each time anyone else engages with the post.
2. Everyone has an agenda.
The mood of LinkedIn could be compared to that of an awkward networking event. Everyone wants something from you; it's just about figuring out what. Most people, of course, just want a job or job candidate.
A lesser known fact is that LinkedIn can be a great resource for staying on top of business and industry trends. LinkedIn purchased SlideShare in 2012 and Pulse in 2013, greatly bolstering its "resume" as a source of content.
3. You can get endorsed for just about anything.
Is it bad that most of my endorsements are from my mom?
I would also say about 90% of my endorsements aren't genuine, which isn't to say that they're not appreciated. I'll take as many endorsements as I can get. In the unlikely event that a potential employer is distinguishing between people based on the number of endorsements for "Microsoft Word," I'm ready!
What's also cool is that you can give people endorsements in every category from "Fruity Loops" to "Tractors." You better believe I endorsed my little brother for "Tractors."
4. You know when people are checking you out.
This is my favorite feature of LinkedIn by far!
It also happens to be the creepiest. How cool is it that you can tell that your ex looks at your LinkedIn page from time to time? And how cool is that you can see when recruiters and head hunters are checking out your profile? Sure, sometimes LinkedIn might only give the position and/or current company of your creepers, but that makes it all the more fun as you try to narrow down who your secret admirer could have been.
Tip: Remember, allow others to see who you are if you view their profile, otherwise you won't be able to see when they visit yours. To do this, go into your settings and click to select what others see when you've viewed their profile. Make sure that you check off your name and headline.
Also, always remember to have fun on LinkedIn. It's basically shopping for your future, so try to relax and enjoy yourself.
What's your favorite thing about LinkedIn?