30 LinkedIn Profile Tips 12/30 – How to use your recommendations

30 short, useful, actionable LinkedIn tips in 30 days from Doctor LinkedIn™, David Petherick. #30×30

#12/30: How to use recommendations effectively.

And how to give them and ask for them.

Because it’s a little bit obscure.


What you say on your profile is biased.

You always praise yourself. I can’t really believe your claims, because I simply don’t know you yet. All the same, I know you are going to be biased.

However, when I see a photo of your customer or your manager telling me how your service or skills specifically benefited them, and I see what industry they are in, where they are, what their name and job title is, and can follow a link to their profile, THEN I can believe it.

And if I see lots of such statements… it shows me different aspects of your work, expertise, service or product, and earns you credibility.

How do you get recommendations?

Well, they don’t often come out of the blue in LinkedIn.

Try this – ask for them from your customers. Say “I want to add a credible recommendation to my online profile so that people can see the real benefits that I deliver. Would you please add your recommendation?”

The worse that might happen is someone might say no or ignore you. So you can ask someone else.

Of course, the way to get recommendations is to give them first.

A: Here’s how to give a recommendation:

  1. Visit the profile of the connection to whom you want to give a recommendation. (You have to be connected on LinkedIn to give or receive a recommendation.)
  2. Click the dropdown arrow at the right of the blue button next to their profile picture, and select ‘Recommend’ – it’s self explanatory after that. 

B: This leads you to where you can ask for a recommendation

This is a ‘secret back door’ to the place where you can ASK for recommendations. For reference, here are two URLs to get you to recommendations quickly:

The steps to give, or ask for a recommendation, are very clear and self-explanatory, and you can keep a record of people you have asked for recommendations and send them reminders if needed.

From here, you can also manage the recommendations you have received to adjust the order on your profile, or decide whether or not to show a specific recommendation, and check and even amend those you have given.

It’s also worth noting that this is where you find your newly-given recommendations and you can act to add them to your profile. They don’t add themselves to your profile when they’re given – but they do stack up here waiting for your approval!

But the tricky part is remembering how to get to where you can ask for a recommendation – so perhaps it’s worth bookmarking this page –  https://www.linkedin.com/recs/ask

The rather obtuse way to ask for recommendations is by clicking on your own profile when editing it, and hitting the little arrow to the right of the blue button again – see below.

This takes you to the same destination page I described earlier where you can type in the name of the person you want to ask for a recommendation.

Quite why you can’t ask for a recommendation from a connection when you’re looking right at that connection’s profile is a mystery to me.

Why are recommendations important?

The power of recommendations is that it’s not you talking about yourself – it’s what other people are saying. So it’s worth asking people to be very specific and precise, and to do the same when you give recommendations.