LinkedIn RecommendationsYou may be surprised to hear that many people are as worried about asking for LinkedIn recommendations as you are.

<————————–Do you think THIS might happen?

Asking others to do something for you is awkward, isn’t it?

But oddly, helping others feels good, right?!

Studies have shown that people are afraid to ask, or feel awkward asking others for help, even more so when it comes to online things.

YET… Those very same people reported that if a friend or colleague asked them for help, they’d gladly do it, and feel good about it too. Sound familiar?  You’d help out a trusted colleague, client, or service provider, wouldn’t you?

So why are you denying your professional network the opportunity to feel good about helping you?

Here are 4 tips to improve your recommendation experience:

#1  ALWAYS personalize your ask
Make sure you change the subject line; “Can you endorse me?” just won’t cut it.  Depending on your personality and relationship you could use something like “Dan, could you help me out?”, “Your support would really help me,” or “Can I ask you a favour please?”

Once you get that personal subject line, don’t stop there! Never, ever send the standard text in the e-mail. Recognize your relationship with the person you are asking, offer to recommend them in return of course, and tell them what their recommendation will mean to you.

#2 Make it easy on them
By providing sample text in your personalized message (see #1), you are making it so, so easy to succeed in getting that recommendation.  Either type a sample message for them to proof and edit, or give three or four bullet points about what you’d like them to speak about.

You will be surprised at the increase in recommendations you’ll get by doing this.

#3 Be selective about who you ask
Think carefully about who you reach out to.  The easiest recommendations come from people who are both professional AND personal friends; these are your “low hanging fruit” if you will.

Think about:

  • Colleagues
  • Project partners
  • Service providers
  • People you manage
  • Past clients

Service providers are the BEST people to ask, really! You are their client, and their job is to make their client feel good…so simple!

#4 Make it a routine
To build your personal brand and reputation, it’s important to build recommendations into your routine.  If you work with clients, be sure to ask them at the end of your project to recommend you.

Every 3 months, make an effort to think about going through the above steps and getting a fresh new recommendation on your profile.

BONUS
If you have a long standing relationship with someone, and they recommended you quite a while ago, consider asking them to refresh their recommendation to reflect your skills and relationship today–and do the same for them too!

Thanks for reading, and feel free to leave a comment below with your thoughts.

– Clare 

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