guest blog

Good friend, mentor, and colleague Carol Schiro Greenwald offers a few pointers for best etiquette using LinkedIn connection requests, something we all need a reminder, or even a brush-up, on. Thanks, Carol once again for all you do to support and improve marketing to the legal profession. I always learn from you! And brava on your new book (see link in her bio below)!

The other day a lawyer said he had looked at a connection’s contacts list and wanted to connect with a few of them. He planned to request links to his friend’s contacts without letting his connection know.

That’s a no-no.

Think about it. If he references their common connection, he is setting his friend up for embarrassment when the person who receives this LinkedIn request calls to find out who the rude one is. If he just requests linking without referencing their common connection, he risks the “ignore” rebuff applied to strangers.

Instead he should think of the manners instilled in kindergarten. Before requesting links to friends of friends, the polite move is to ask the friend if he may make the request. Or better yet, would the friend facilitate the introduction?

Assuming a positive response either way, the next courteous move is to let your friend know if the link occurs. Assuming you do link, an experienced networker might then ask his friend if he wants to do a “double date” breakfast including the new common contact and a contact the friend selects from his list.

Similarly, you can play the courtesy card with strangers who look at your profile. If you have their names, send them notes thanking them for looking at your profile. Ask them if you can help them in any way. This can lead to new connections and opportunities.

When you post on LinkedIn and someone takes the time to comment, do you just ignore their action or do you send a quick thank you? Obviously, the latter is more effective in terms of deepening your connection.

When someone introduces you to another person, do you thank the referrer. You should. It’s a polite, strategic move, as are courteous follow-up reports to keep the referrer up to date on how the referral works out.

Successful networking is about giving to get. Courtesy is an essential component of this mindset.

Carol GreenwaldCarol Schiro Greenwald, Ph.D. is a strategist, coach, trainer and networking guru for lawyers, accountants and other professionals who want to improve their business development skills. Her new book, Strategic Networking for Introverts, Extroverts and Everyone in Between (American Bar Association, Law Practice Division, 2019) is available at,

The book is a nuts-and-bolts guide for turning socializing into business development opportunities. By detailing first-hand accounts alongside visuals, charts and checklists, the author introduces a high-level approach to making connections.

Carol has spent the last two decades working with law firms to create client-centric cultures and develop the personal business development potential of all the members of a firm. She is also the co-author of “Build Your Practice the Logical Way: Maximize Your Client Relationships” with Steven Skyles-Mulligan.

Carol can be reached at 914.834.9320 or