Everyone knows how important networking is for building careers. However, networking for extroverts are much easier than the introverts. Many people might think the networking sites will be the solution not only for introverts but extroverts, but I disagree.
Before the on-line networking era in the 90’s, I had been to many networking events as an interior design majored student, despite my introverted nature, I managed to chat and meet with strangers at those events, I kept doing it for my entire senior year, but it failed to land me any job after graduate.
In my early career as an interior designer, I got more chances to go to those networking events, again, I chatted and met with strangers, and hoped to meet my mentors who could help me launching my career to the next level, well, it did not happen, either.
Here is the catch. Many people head to those events for networking with people in order to generate business leads, and hopefully those leads will turn into future clients, but what do you think networking with an interior design majored student or an interior designer who works for someone else will somehow turn into business opportunities? Of course not, no wonder when I went to those events as a student or as a designer working for someone else, people all cut the conversations short and went for someone else after I introduced myself. People were all looking for the affluents, a potential client, a well-known designer who owns his/her own business, or a person who knows a lot of affluent people. Unfortunately, this situation happened off-line, also happens on-line.
In conclusion, I do not think joining the on-line networking sites will help someone who are not a well-established or an affluent person. However, your contacts will definitely become theirs.