How Do I Disconnect from Someone on LinkedIn?

How-Do-I-Disconnect-from-Someone-on-LinkedIn-V3

Revised on May 23, 2014

It is amazing how often I get asked this question of how to disconnect from someone and remove LinkedIn connections from my own personal network.  If you think of connecting to someone as their joining your virtual world, if the relationship does not work out because you feel you are being spammed or for another reason, you do have the option of disconnecting from them and removing them as a connection.  Connecting with someone is not a marriage by any means!  Hopefully this gives those who want to build out a large virtual network or even those who want to start slowly connecting to people that you virtually meet on LinkedIn some sense of security in doing so.

Disconnecting and removing a connection is as easy as going to the “Contacts” screen, pressing “Remove Connections” at the top right-hand side, and then choosing and confirming who you want to disconnect from and remove from your LinkedIn connections.

LinkedIn gives you two options vis a vis disconnecting from a LinkedIn connection:

1. Remove a LinkedIn connection when visiting their profile

Press the right arrow where you see a “Send a message” prompt, and you should see the “Remove connection” option at the very bottom as pictured below:

How to remove a LinkedIn connection from their profile

2. Remove a LinkedIn connection from the Contacts app

Find the person you want to disconnect from inside the Contacts app. At the bottom of each contact you should see options to Tag, Message, and More. Selecting “More” will give you the ability to remove a connection as pictured below:

How to disconnect from a LinkedIn connection through the Contacts app.

Removing a LinkedIn connection through either of the above two methods will yield the same result.

The beauty of using this Remove Connections functionality to disconnect is that:

  • Your contact will not be informed that you removed them from your connections.
  • Should your disconnected connection wish to invite you to connect again, even after you remove them as a connection, they will get an error message saying something to the effect that “This user cannot be invited at this time”. If they contact you directly about this be prepared to explain (I have been in the same situation in the past so you will have to explain in your own words).
  • You can re-invite the person you disconnected from, in which case the connection will be fully restored as if you never removed them.

The ability to remove connections and disconnect should give you the confidence that should, for whatever reason, you want to disconnect with one of your connections, the option is there.And it is easy to do as well.

For more tips about using LinkedIn, make sure you check out my books Windmill Networking: Understanding, Leveraging & Maximizing LinkedIn, Maximizing LinkedIn for Sales and Social Media Marketing, and 30 Minutes to Maximizing LinkedIn.

If you’re looking to disconnect from the wrong types but still build your LinkedIn connections, here’s an interesting infographic with tips on how to connect with the right people on LinkedIn:

How to double your LinkedIn connections #linkedin #infographic

Infographic source: WhoIsHostingThis?

About the Author:

Neal Schaffer, Founder and Editor-In-Chief

The Founder and Editor-In-Chief of Maximize Social Business, Neal Schaffer is a leader in helping businesses and professional strategically maximize their use of social media. Neal is the author of three social media books, including the recently published definitive social media strategy book Maximize Your Social. Forbes lists him as a Top 35 Social Media Power Influencer and AdAge lists his blog, Maximize Social Business (formerly known as Windmill Networking), as a top 100 global marketing blog. Neal provides social media strategy consulting and coaching, having worked with Fortune 500 companies and a Grammy-award winning musician. He has presented worldwide on social media at more than 150 events and also teaches social media marketing at Rutgers University. +Neal Schaffer

Neal Schaffer
The Founder and Editor-In-Chief of Maximize Social Business, Neal Schaffer is a leader in helping businesses and professional strategically maximize their use of social media. Neal is the author of three social media books, including the recently published definitive social media strategy book Maximize Your Social. Forbes lists him as a Top 35 Social Media Power Influencer and AdAge lists his blog, Maximize Social Business (formerly known as Windmill Networking), as a top 100 global marketing blog. Neal provides social media strategy consulting and coaching, having worked with Fortune 500 companies and a Grammy-award winning musician. He has presented worldwide on social media at more than 150 events and also teaches social media marketing at Rutgers University. +Neal Schaffer
Neal Schaffer

@nealschaffer

Author, @MaxYourSocial | Founder @msocialbusiness | Trilingual Social Media Strategy Consultant, Coach, and Speaker | 日米ソーシャルメディア専門家|G+: https://t.co/BqaJvubiP8
How to Drive Traffic From Social Media Contests http://t.co/4CHLYVjOnj - 1 hour ago
Neal Schaffer
Social Fresh West

Comments

  1. says

    LinkedIn should realize from how often that question gets asked how utterly counter-intuitive this is. Where it SHOULD be is on the profile of the person your connected to. It should be an available action there — “Disconnect from this person.”

  2. says

    LinkedIn should realize from how often that question gets asked how utterly counter-intuitive this is. Where it SHOULD be is on the profile of the person your connected to. It should be an available action there — “Disconnect from this person.”

  3. Neal Schaffer says

    Scott,

    You are bang on. I think LinkedIn really needs to revamp the entire User Interface. There is too much bouncing around different screens in order to accomplish something on LinkedIn. This definitely contributes to the poor user performance that we feel everyday. Not to mention that you can’t delete your Inbox messages, leading to more data in the servers than LinkedIn needs. Definitely time for an overhaul.

    On a separate note, it is an honor to receive a comment from you on my blog. “I Am Not a Number” is a classic article in Networking circles. I often blog about the “virtual network” which is an extension of your “virtual handshake”. Thank you and looking forward to further communications with you!

  4. says

    “You can re-invite the person you disconnected from, in which case the connection will be fully restored.”

    This is not so. YOU CANNOT re-invite the person after disconnecting.

    -Steven

  5. says

    “You can re-invite the person you disconnected from, in which case the connection will be fully restored.”

    This is not so. YOU CANNOT re-invite the person after disconnecting.

    -Steven

  6. Neal Schaffer says

    Steven,

    Unless things have changed recently, I was able to do this for one of my connections just a few months ago. Have you experienced this recently?

    Cheers,
    Neal

  7. Neal Schaffer says

    I actually experimented with this with a friend of mine and I was able to disconnect and then invite, so it still works. I think that LinkedIn must have placed the restriction on you because of the artificial ceiling they put on your connections…

  8. shiyun chung says

    Hmm, this is interesting.

    Both of you are very helpful for the new LinkedIn user.
    Especially clear out all those cynical views on social networking.

    I like to connect to both of you. If I just send a simple invite, what will be the msg I will get?

    Thanks,

  9. shiyun chung says

    Hmm, this is interesting.

    Both of you are very helpful for the new LinkedIn user.
    Especially clear out all those cynical views on social networking.

    I like to connect to both of you. If I just send a simple invite, what will be the msg I will get?

    Thanks,

  10. Neal Schaffer says

    Shiyung,

    I am an open networker and will accept your invite! Please feel free to send me an invite! And if I can help you out any way let me know!

    Cheers,
    Neal

  11. SouthOfBoston69 says

    I understand a connection can “disconnect” from your connections list. Can that same person delete a letter of recommendation they previously sent to you and was posted on your profile?  It appears a letter has disappeared from a “disconnection” of mine.  My feeling is once someone gives you a letter, it belongs to you, not only the writer.  Please let me know how I can retreive this letter. Thanks.

  12. Chris Belke1 says

    I am not a linked in member but foolishly i agreed to be linked in to just two other people, now I keep getting requests and wate of time emails from these two people of who they are linked in with.  I want out. How do I get of this roundabout????????

    • says

      Chris,

      I don’t know your exact situation, but probably what you should do is one of the following:

      - Cancel your account (in your Settings screen)
      - Disconnect from your connections
      - Adjust your settings so that you don’t accept introduction requests

      Does this help?

    • says

      Chris,

      I don’t know your exact situation, but probably what you should do is one of the following:

      - Cancel your account (in your Settings screen)
      - Disconnect from your connections
      - Adjust your settings so that you don’t accept introduction requests

      Does this help?

  13. says

    Thank you for your informative article. I looked up this information month’s ago and even the FAQ’s on Linkedin said it wasn’t possible. the information you provided was very useful. I appreciate it.

    • says

      You’re very welcome Lori! If you have a burning LinkedIn question that hasn’t been answered elsewhere, please let me know so that I can write a blog post on it! Thanks!

  14. says

    Yeah, they could take a look at any other social networking site.  Having to go to the other page, and then choose to remove and then find the name again without a search function,…. well, you really have to want to get rid of the person badly … 

  15. EmailTray says

    The problem with that “Remove Connections” link is that it could possibly mean “Remove All of My Connections”. I do this sort of thing for a living (find navigation errors where users will be afraid or not understand where to go and why). LinkedIn product managers should change that to something like “Remove a Connection” or otherwise make it clear that clicking on that link won’t delete all your connections at once and irrevocably. This may seem funny but, if LinkedIn was a smaller company or an eCommerce company, this kind of awkward phrasing could mean everything.

  16. says

    Thanks for this blogpost. Google easily suggests “linkedin how to unconnect” and it leads to this post – obviously, people are asking for it. And as many other says – it should be on the screen where I see someone’s profile. That other way – “go and find the function, then select what you want to do that function with” – reminds me older Nokia mobile phones that had functions split to those that were available contextually and to those that you had real trouble to use (although you needed them quite often). Very silly indeed.

  17. says

    Glad I’m not the only one. The reason it’s being asked all the time, is because it’s not very bloody obvious how to do it. I’ve searched and searched several times and STILL can’t work out how to do it. It’s a bit worrying that this social media platform, designed to connect PROFESSIONALS, can’t even take care of something as basic as Unconnecting with someone. If it was simple, the question wouldn’t be asked all time would it?

  18. Neal Schaffer says

    Scott,

    You are bang on. I think LinkedIn really needs to revamp the entire User Interface. There is too much bouncing around different screens in order to accomplish something on LinkedIn. This definitely contributes to the poor user performance that we feel everyday. Not to mention that you can’t delete your Inbox messages, leading to more data in the servers than LinkedIn needs. Definitely time for an overhaul.

    On a separate note, it is an honor to receive a comment from you on my blog. “I Am Not a Number” is a classic article in Networking circles. I often blog about the “virtual network” which is an extension of your “virtual handshake”. Thank you and looking forward to further communications with you!

  19. Neal Schaffer says

    Steven,

    Unless things have changed recently, I was able to do this for one of my connections just a few months ago. Have you experienced this recently?

    Cheers,
    Neal

  20. Neal Schaffer says

    I actually experimented with this with a friend of mine and I was able to disconnect and then invite, so it still works. I think that LinkedIn must have placed the restriction on you because of the artificial ceiling they put on your connections…

  21. Neal Schaffer says

    Shiyung,

    I am an open networker and will accept your invite! Please feel free to send me an invite! And if I can help you out any way let me know!

    Cheers,
    Neal

Trackbacks

  1. […] When a request comes in from someone you don’t know, it’s a good idea to initially respond with something like: “Can you remind me how we met?” No matter what someone might say they have to offer you, in my experience they are more often than not connecting with you in order to pitch you. It’s the new cold call. Having said that, I’ve met some very nice people who were interested in my work and reached out via LinkedIn (you know who you are) and I’m better for it. Just be careful. And remember, you can always disconnect from someone on LinkedIn. […]

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