Out of Network

by on Aug.19, 2008, under career, Internet

I will admit that I’m not big on online social networking.  Maybe I’m too old or it just doesn’t seem important enough, but I don’t have a page on FaceBook or MySpace (actually I do have one on MySpace, but only for work-related testing – I have no friends there, I even deleted Tom).  I don’t have any interest in Twitter, and most of the web content I read is for news/information.  I signed up a few years back on Classmates, but only to try and find some old friends from high school – I don’t keep my information current.  To all of this, there is one exception – LinkedIn.

I discovered LinkedIn about a year ago and for some reason this one had more draw to me than any of the rest of the networking sites out there.  I guess because the intent is more professional than sites such as MySpace.  So naturally I invited half the people I knew to join and connected with people from every job I’ve ever held – I am now 117 connections strong.  For the most part I avoid inviting the uninitiated – if they want in, they will find their way and when they do I will ask to connect with them.  But if there is someone in LinkedIn that I know well enough that I could pick them out in a crowd, I will try to connect.  And most of my requests have been accepted, a few have been left untouched (either the person hasn’t checked in or doesn’t remember me that well – so be it).  But looking through them the other day, one struck me and all I could do was laugh at it.  The status was listed as “Doesn’t Know”.

The person in question was a former colleague/semi-superior from my last job at a web agency which I left on good terms almost 2 years ago.  I didn’t always agree with the guy (whom I will affectionately refer to as Cockman) and he did harbor some grudges against me over an incident where I was essentially framed.  Long story short, a client issue fell through the cracks, the AM who dropped the ball said that I dropped the ball and Cockman flips out on me about it (my lack of having the smoking gun in my hand didn’t seem to matter).  And it didn’t seem to matter that once the issue came to my attention, the client went from ready to walk to singing my praises in a matter of days (they actually convinced Cockman not to fire me since I was the only one in the company who could figure out how to build their site the right way).  Prior to, during and fllowing this incident, all of my work was always ahead of schedule, under budget, and exceeding expectations.  There were projects that I worked on that did not do well, but it was NEVER due to my segment of the work (usually these were his projects that were under-spec’ed, under-staffed, and poorly scheduled).  So why he held a grudge is still beyond me.

What I find so amusing about this, though, is that he opted to shun my invitation recently.  I sent the invite over a year ago, but I check on them every few months.  So I know that he refused it within the past 2 months, which means that nearly 2 years after leaving the company – a timeframe in which most of my past colleagues there are on great terms and even the CEO considers me a worthwhile connection – he is STILL holding this grudge against me.  Personally I don’t even really care – it does not and will likely never affect me.  But I kind of feel sorry for him that he can’t seem to get past such things.  Life is both too short and too long to harbor such resentments.

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