How to Be Invisible to Colleagues on LinkedIn

Keeping a low profile on LinkedIn is possible with a few changes to your settings.
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LinkedIn is a social network optimized for business networking and professional relationships. The goal of most users is visibility, but there are times when you may want to keep a low profile. There is no single setting that will allow you to be invisible to colleagues, but there are steps you can take to decrease your visibility to colleagues.

1 Disable Public Profile

Your public profile is information available to people who are not members of LinkedIn. This information is available through search engines. Under "Privacy & Settings," select "Edit Your Public Profile." On the next screen, select "Make my public profile visible to no one."

2 Review Your Connections

Most privacy settings allows you to choose between your connections and your network. Your network consists of your connections, their connections, and the connections of their connections, as well as everyone in all the groups you belong to. This can be a very large group. To increase privacy, always choose "Your Connections" instead of "Your Network."

Your connections are people to whom you are directly connected. When you view their profiles, "1st" appears in the upper right. You may want to remove some connections to increase your privacy. The removed person does not receive a notification, but if he follows his account closely he may notice he has been removed.

3 Control Your Activity Feed

Your actions on LinkedIn, such as updating your profile or liking a post, form your activity feed. You can limit who sees your feed to your connections, or make it your activity feed completely private. You can allow your connections to see your Activity Feed, but remove certain actions from the feed, such as updates to your profile. Under "Privacy & Settings," review the settings for "Turn on/off your activity broadcasts" and "Select who can see your activity feed."

4 Hide Your Connections

By default, each of your connections can view your list of connections. If your connections include colleagues, and you don't wish them to see your other connections, go to "Privacy & Settings" and update "Select who can see your connections."

5 Hide In Plain Sight

LinkedIn is widely used for job hunting, but if you only use it when job hunting, you are missing many other benefits of the service -- and also alerting your current colleagues that you are job hunting. Use LinkedIn regularly to promote yourself and your company, keep up with trends in your industry, and build and maintain your network. If the time comes to start job hunting again, you will be much better prepared, and there will not be any discernible increase in your LinkedIn activity that might draw the attention of your colleagues.

Timothy Smithee is a technical writer specializing in internal operating procedures for IT and manufacturing support. He has written for diverse publications including "RV Lifestyle" and "Everyman." He holds a Bachelor of Arts in English literature from the University of Western Ontario and a Bachelor of Arts in film studies from Carleton University.