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Giving recommendations on LinkedIn is an excellent way of saying thank you to people you have worked with as colleagues, clients or suppliers. It is also a highly effective means of building your own network and can assist others by passing on your recommendations. Personal recommendations and word of mouth referrals are still one of the most persuasive forms of marketing today. We trust other people’s opinion more than we trust companies or organisations themselves. By giving someone a recommendation, you may, in turn, help them to secure their next client or next job.

Follow this step-by-step guide to start sharing your experience and providing recommendations for your connections:

1.     Find the profile of the person you want to give the recommendation to.

You can do this by typing their name into the search box at the top left hand of your LinkedIn home page, or by clicking on their name or image when you see them in your news feed.

2.     Click on the ‘More…’ button just underneath their profile picture and title.

Then select ‘Recommend’ at the bottom of the list that appears. This brings up a new box entitled ‘Write (name) a recommendation’.

3.     Using the drop-down boxes, define how you know the person you are recommending.

You don’t have to have worked together to recommend someone. There are a number of options to choose from to describe your relationship including having worked together, studied together or been a mentor.

Next, select the person’s position at the time you are giving them the recommendation for. You can recommend people based on their present role or their previous employment. It doesn’t have to be their current position.

Remember that whichever options you choose, these will show on the (public) recommendation you give them so ensure they are accurate.

4.     Write your recommendation.

Once you have pressed ‘Next’ a new box appears for you to write the text of your recommendation. Consider what you want to say about the person – and how to say it. The best recommendations are specific, personal and honest. What particularly did the person do and what impact did it have? What makes them stand out? What specific skills do you feel they have? Once you have finished and reviewed your text, press Send. The person will then be notified that they have a new recommendation waiting for them to publish on their profile.

You can edit or delete recommendations you have given at any time so if things change, you can simply find the recommendation and make the changes you wish.

If you haven’t already, you may also wish to endorse the person for the specific skills that they have or that you have referred to in your recommendation.

You can also request recommendations from your 1st-degree connections. Just like testimonials on your website, these recommendations on your profile are an important way of showing other people that you can do what you say you do. Having a good number of recommendations can provide that extra level of information to persuade a prospective client to pick up the phone and get in touch.

I would welcome hearing from you with your tips on how to ask for recommendations and your comments on the value of giving recommendations to others.