What You Need to Know About LinkedIn Recommendations

LinkedIn

As you all know, LinkedIn is a powerful tool these days when it comes to trying to find a job, or hiring fresh talent. So, it’s no surprise that great recommendations on LinkedIn bear heavy weight on a recruiter’s impression of a potential candidate’s profile. Here is a summary of what you need to know about recommendations, so you can stay ahead of the game:

  1. Why are they important?
    A recruiter or potential employer can view your recommendations as a reference even before you have set foot in the interview. If written correctly, a descriptive and specific recommendation can really work in your favor as it serves to validate and confirm your strengths, skills, work ethic, and more!
    A great recommendation simply adds credibility to your profile, and gives employers and recruiters a quiet sense of confidence in your abilities before even meeting you.
    In a small industry such Architecture and Interior Design it is also important to show the professional relationships you have developed.
    Your LinkedIn recommendations provide a glimpse into this aspect of your professional life. The key is to have quality recommendations, rather than focusing on quantity. A few good, quality recommendations far outweigh a bunch of mediocre ones.
  2. Is there such a thing as a “not-so-good” recommendation?
    Oh yes, there are simple ways to get these recommendations wrong, which you should try to avoid.
    Having someone that doesn’t know you well give you a recommendation most probably won’t work in your favor. Ideally, you should have recommendations from your managers, clients or suppliers to really make your profile shine. Peer recommendations are all good and well, as long as they are not the only ones you have.
    Another common mistake is having generic and vague recommendations. These are better left unused as they don’t sound authentic and provide little value for your profile.
  3. How to ask for a recommendation:
    There are some important guidelines to follow when requesting a recommendation from someone. The
    first of these is:

    • Don’t be shy – if you don’t ask, you don’t get!
    • Ask the right people – Makes sure you request recommendations from people that really know you, your strengths and capabilities well.
    • Use the LinkedIn recommendations tool – This enables the submitted recommendation to show up on your LinkedIn profile as well as linking back to the recommendation writer’s profile. You can find this tool either from your profile page where you select the “ask to be recommended” option, or you access the tool through the “Privacy and Settings” option under your photo in the top right corner of your page.
    • Send personalized messages – LinkedIn auto-fills a generic message to send with your request. Personalize the message for a better response. It’s also advisable to send a separate email with a heads up in case they miss the request.
    • Specify the job you are going for – This will assist the person in really focusing the recommendation in a way that will truly benefit you and the type of job you are going for.
    • Guide the content request – The person you are requesting from might find it useful to have some guidelines as to what kind of points you would like them to include.
    • Be respectful, polite, and always say thank you
  4. Pay it forward: Don’t forget to write recommendations for others that either request it or that you think deserve it. If you are not sure what to include, start by looking at some other recommendations on LinkedIn. Most importantly, make sure you are recommending someone you actually have positive things to say about, and make sure your recommendation is specific, descriptive and memorable.

So there you have it – the main guidelines for LinkedIn recommendations. Hopefully you found this article helpful and you will use these tips when requesting or writing a recommendation in the future.

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