So today I received endorsements from two of my LinkedIn connections and, at the risk of sounding juvenile, I don’t get it. One of the endorsements was for US GAAP – just to be clear, while I’m a recruiter for finance executives and like to think I know a lot about the profession, I have never held a Controllership position (trust me, you don’t want me closing your books or putting together your financial statements). The other endorsement was for Copy Editing…? Perhaps this individual noticed that I worked in the publishing industry (in a sales role) about 8 years ago and figured that I have this skill set? Or maybe they just hit the LinkedIn ‘Endorse’ button accidentally? Not sure, but I can tell you that I’m not qualified to edit anybody’s manuscript.
I’ve been getting swarmed with these endorsements lately and, honestly, I don’t pay much attention to them – but here’s my two cents:
Know Who You’re Endorsing. I love that LinkedIn gives you the ability to endorse other people’s skills, but I think it’s important for us to really understand the backgrounds of those we’re endorsing before pulling the trigger – otherwise we make inappropriate endorsements and lose credibility.
Be Selective. Don’t give out as many endorsements as you can simply because it’s the latest fad but, rather, save them for those whose work product, accomplishments and career you truly respect. Endorsements should be treated as gold medals, not birdseed. The more endorsements you hand out, the less meaningful they are.
Don’t Stop Networking. Handing out LinkedIn endorsements should never take the place of good old-fashioned networking. Don’t stop picking up the phone, taking lunch meetings and making introductions just because you’ve been hitting your target of at least 20 endorsements per day. One does not equal the other, not even close.
Fidler’s Law of LinkedIn Endorsements: The volume of endorsements you give out is inversely proportional to the strength of your network.