Like many busy people I used to politely decline requests to join LinkedIn - a social networking website for professionals. A few weeks ago I finally gave it a try and on uploading my Gmail contacts a whopping 70+ people I knew were already in LinkedIn, wow it has really taken off! Check out my shiny new LinkedIn profile here:

http://www.linkedin.com/in/PaulLockwood

What are the main benefits I see from the site? Luckily I have never have trouble finding contracts, but every so often I find myself working for really bad managers - incompetents seem to cluster, why is that? With LinkedIn I hope to avoid making such mistakes ever again:

LinkedIn should enable us to observe any company's rate of turnover, especially to discover if competent senior developers are leaving in droves or only staying for a few months. As more and more people joined LinkedIn it will become pretty easy to contact someone who used to have the job you are interviewing for - what better way to get to the 411 on why they left than ask the individual themselves?

One thing I have found is that not every member responds to an invite immediately. After three weeks I sent a reminders to the few stragglers and all but one responded within the day - perhaps they missed the first 'bulk request' due to spam filters? Whatever the reason don't forget than you can easily resend an invitation to an existing member.