Counting Up Connections

Everyone knows by this time that the number of connections for LinkedIn users is displayed as a number from 0 (yes, there are some people on the system with no connections) to 500+.

A reader asked if I could help him determine how many connections someone with more than 500 had and it proved to be an interesting challenge – I thought you might like to see…

Connections’ connections

So first off – if someone isn’t connected to you, you don’t have an effective mechanism to determine how many connections they have.  The best advice I could give is to suggest you ask someone that does connect to them;-)

Visible connections

If your direct connection allows you to see their connections (see my article about “A Matter of Trust” from last year), you can calculate the number of connections they have.

Get to their contacts page – and see how many more pages of information you see (page numbers at the bottom).  The site is currently showing 60 connections per page, so if there are 17 pages, take that as 17*60 = 1020

That’s a good rough value – if you want precision, subtract two and count the number of connections on the first and last page by hand…-)

Undisclosed connections

If you can’t see your connections’ connections, I don’t see a way for you to figure out how many they have.

My reader suggested that someone else was “teasing” them by saying that they had a trick, but I’ll admit to being in the dark on this one…  Perhaps there is a bug or flaw – I don’t see a way that the system should let you get this.

Not that it matters

I consider this mostly a parlor trick – if someone has more than 500 connections, it doesn’t mean much to me.

I’ll connect if I have a relationship, and I may connect in spite of the fact that they have a whole lot of connections…

My list is bigger than yours….

And that’s what I’m worried about – that others will really put stock in trying to have more connections.  But that’s not you, right?

To your continued success,

Steven Tylock


  1. Hi Steve! We’ve crossed paths at many Rochester events but I don’t think I’ve ever had the pleasure of a true conversation. I’ve been enjoying your posts on LinkedIn features and couldn’t resist commenting on this one. In my opinion, the fact that someone has 500 or 5000 connections is not nearly so important as the quality of the relationship the person has with those connections. Ideally that relationship should be strong enough to cause you to be willing to introduce a contact to someone else in your network, or to cause them to pass your resume on to someone whom they know. Connecting with strangers will inflate your total but generally has little value other than increasing your score and perhaps making you feel “superior” – hollow goals indeed.

    Best wishes Steve. I will look for an opportunity to say hello soon – perhaps at an upcoming Digital Rochester event.

    Craig Lambrecht

  2. Craig,

    Well met!-) I think you’re absolutely correct on this – and that’s a point I repeatedly make. I put this post up because it was a genuine question from a reader and a fun little exercise;-)


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