Asking for Recommendations on LinkedIn

Jan 12, 2010

I receive requests for recommendations on LinkedIn regularly and thought I’d share some ideas for anyone who is trying to build up his or her number of recommendations.

When asking for a recommendation, it’s a good idea to ask only people you really know — so if someone in their network actually contacts them, they can speak openly, honestly and authentically about you. Remember: Most people will not recommend anyone who they haven’t worked with at least once, or have had some sort of positive business dealing with to reference.

If you are serious about getting recommended, write unsolicited recommendations for people in your network that you feel deserve some recognition. Everyone loves receiving unsolicited compliments. Especially when you can say something positive about that person’s work and abilities.

After a few days if that person hasn’t reciprocated with a recommendation of you, it’s ok to send a polite request for a recommendation of your work. Keep in mind, if you don’t think they could write an authentic recommendation, it’s probably best to skip them and realize you’ve created some goodwill simply by recommending them.

If you do send the request, it’s a good idea to tell the person you’re asking to take the time to recommend your work or skills you’d like to be recommended for to potential clients/customers or employers.

Last, try to schedule informal in-person meetings with people in your network you think you could help or do work for over the coming year. Try coming up with something you think would interest the person, such as an introduction to a resource or connection who could further their business interests.

I’m usually very happy to meet most people who request my time for a phone call or coffee to talk about business and social media.

I’d love to hear your thoughts about how you’re using LinkedIn to build relationships and your business. Give me a buzz or tweet me! @jonathangood

1 Comment. Leave new

We can take recommendations a step further. When people ask for a recommendation, I use their request to begin a dialogue. For example, I’ll ask them to tell me what they are most proud of in their work. Then I’ll send a copy of my recommendation for their approval before posting it. The net result is we have more than one opportunity to communicate with each other, and that deepens the relationship.

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