O.K, hands up if you look at recommendations on LinkedIn for anything other than leads on competitors profiles? despite what I constantly hear of the value of recommendations. I view them as pretty worthless. If a profile has 100’s of them, I value them even less. The recommendation system has been much abused and carry little credibility.
I rarely if ever give recommendations that are requested.
I know LinkedIn encourage this practice with “recommend back” but it doesn’t work for me.
I got so hacked off with being repeatedly asked by people I could hardly remember or who I had a relationship with based on an exchange of a few messages, that I wrote and returned the following recommendations over the last week: (Names have been changed to protect the guilty!)
I remember Dave well because as a manager he was uniquely unpopular with his staff. he was the only reason I left the company without a job to go to.
Unfortunately I am getting on in years and must have lost my memory because I have no recollection of working with Helen 17 years ago. She has good manners though, saying please in her request for this recommendation.
I worked closely with Tony in my HR capacity with my old company. We had plenty of opportunity to get to know each other well during a number of performance disciplinaries and whilst conducting anger management counselling.
Ken is the most creative person I know when it comes to expense returns, figure reporting and reasons for being absent.
I’m delighted to provide a recommendation for Sue as requested. my recommendation is that you don’t employ her.
Surprisingly, one of these was actually posted on a profile for a week, obviously not read by the recipient but automatically posted. How many times do you get asked to recommend people when there is really no basis for a recommendation, other than that you worked with them some years ago. I have heard of LinkedIn trainers setting homework to get 25 recommendations by the next class, with the suggestion to mail all their former colleagues, their current colleagues and other friends. I can’t buy in to that.
If you must ask people, ask those who you really believe are qualified to comment and would have a real reason to recommend you. If they recommend you, don’t recommend them back, it’s not “I will if you will!”
My policy for recommendations now is quite simple:
I won’t give requested recommendations. Please don’t ask me as refusal often offends. If I haven’t replied, please don’t chase me and make me tell you why.
I will give recommendations to people who I think deserve them, as well as giving them in recognition of good work completed. Giving recommendations is my way of giving a hat tip or just saying thanks. I know it is much appreciated.
Whats your view on recommendations? Do you value them and trust them? Do you give them too easily?
Keep being ambassadors, I’m off to hide from the LinkedIn coaches. that’s 2 days in a row I suspect I have caused a little upset.