The Seven Deadly Linked-Sins 

Following up our recent article on the Eight Signs and Symptoms of Linkfluenza, The Seven Deadly Linked-Sins spells out online LinkedIn behaviour that most everyday users loathe.


For example, are you really an African Prince with USD $22MIL you desperately need to pop into a connection's bank account? Or are you merely tripping up because the platform is simply too tempting to resist and you're not sure of the unwritten ground rules? The devil is always in the detail, so do read on.

Either way, from time to time many of us have found ourselves succumbing to the lure of one of more of these Linked-Sins, whether by accident, design or over enthusiasm. So to help you navigate your way and become a better LinkedIn citizen, here is a list of sins in all their manifestations to keep you on the straight and narrow. 

  1. Lust - LinkedIn is not Tinder - commenting on appearances and profile pictures, sending creepy emails, dating requests, hook-up invites or offers of marriage is a definite no no. Do NOT be tempted. The Remove & Report Connection options are far too easy for recipients to find.
  2. Gluttony – More is never enough. Do you rate yourself by how many connections you have? Let's not forget that LinkedIn is an online platform and not real life. 10K connections does not make anyone a better spouse, parent, sibling or son/daughter or even corporate citizen. Don't mistake the map for the territory. To some extent the number of your connections doesn't matter, it's what you do with those connections that truly counts. So connection, conversation and engagement might be far better measures. Check out your LinkedIn social selling index instead.
  3. Greed - adding your new connections to your email database without permission and sending them unsolicited emails. Not only does this breach privacy laws in most countries, it's plain and simply rude. Another sin that falls into this category might be that you've set up a IfTTT (If This Then That) auto responder and your new connections get a full on sales pitch within a nano second of accepting. Don't forget, on average it takes 9 or 10 pieces of communication before an interested customer might purchase. A sales pitch within a moment of connecting is a turnoff. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Unsubscribe, delete or disconnect are too easy for the recipient, and hard to recover from for the sender.
  4.  Sloth - not changing your employment / job title in a timely manner once you've left an organisation. After all, why put things off today when you could put them off tomorrow? Right? Perhaps you don't know how to change it so you leave it there because you still get added kudos by being linked to the brand. It might be tempting, but resist the lure. Remember your LinkedIn profile is selling you to your contacts and perhaps prospective employers. Letting the world see that you are lazy is not putting your best foot forward. Perhaps just as bad is the fact that your profile picture is still that scan of your high school yearbook but that’s now 20 years ago and those big shoulder pads or the paisley tie aren’t a good look.
  5. Wrath - ranting or snarky comments on LinkedIn, either as posts or in comments, frequently about issues not relevant to the platform such as religion, politics or sex. Life's too short. Remember, LinkedIn is an international forum and sometimes the rest of the planet isn’t interested in your conspiracy theories about your government... There are definitely other platforms more suitable for you to be driving those issues on. We’re sure the CIA, NSA or relevant authorities in your own country will be more than interested in your views. Enough said.
  6. Envy - more to the point we’re speaking p****** envy. In this case we’re talking, Profile Envy (copying other people’s profiles, even using other people's profile pics!). Profile envy can even lead to Premature Publication – ( where you've been super organised with creating content for sharing but get too excited and let loose on LinkedIn every few hours with an update or published article. ) This is wrong on so many levels because A. people switch off from your posts like the boy who cried wolf, B. people assume you have too much time on your hands (and therefore unsuccessful) because you're on LinkedIn all day every day and C. you have missed such a great opportunity to showcase your thought leadership over a longer period of time, and at the time when your highest prospect target audience is on. So, ditch the keeping up with the Jones’ mentality and do your own thing.
  7. Pride - claiming job titles higher/bigger/better than you truly have. Yes it happens. There are some people so addicted to exaggeration that they can't tell the truth without lying. And companies are wising up with policies and processes that now police how staff describe themselves when representing the organisation online.

Don't panic. If you identified with one or more of the above list, all is not lost. Forgiveness is at hand, redemption is nigh, and LinkedIn nirvana is only a few clicks away. Simply eliminate those behaviours sooner rather than later and get on with business of building and maintaining meaningful connections along with creating engaging online content again.

Finally, we know there are many, many more Linked-Sins that we've yet to encounter. So if you've identified any other Linked-Sins please comment below!

Don't forget to help other Linked-Sinners to repent and redeem themselves as well, so they too can live long and prosper on the platform.  Please share ---- 



Amanda Blesing & Russell Boon

Amanda Blesing & Russell Boon

  • This article was jointly written by Amanda Blesing and Russell Boon, both of whom have become accidental LinkedIn ninjas.
  • Hand on heart, we've each committed one or two of the Linked-Sins listed above and humbly beg your forgiveness.
  • Repentance and redemption are yours to access too. And LinkedIn nirvana might be just one click or share away.





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