(Photo Credit: TheSeafarer/Flickr)
Many LinkedIn users are annoyed by those “so-and-so has endorsed you” email notifications; however, these are more valuable to a person’s career than one might think. Yes, endorsements can be a nuisance and seem pointless, but people also negated the possibility that this new thing called “social media” could be used to market and grow their business -- and look at how that turned out. Ignorance isn't bliss when it comes to skill endorsements on LinkedIn; it can cause you to miss out on valuable tools and resources that could award you a dream career. Here are three ways LinkedIn endorsements can benefit your professional life.
1. Discover your strengths: Professionals aren’t always aware of which areas of their jobs that they excel at, and endorsements are a great way to discover those strengths. Typically, the people endorsing a particular skill on your profile are indicating that they recognize and vouch that you excel in that particular area, so consider it a “like” button for your expertise on LinkedIn.
2. Reconnect with past colleagues: The people endorsing your skills will, most likely, be former colleagues or other professionals who have worked with you, so it’s a great means to reconnect with an old boss or co-worker if they send an endorsement your way. You can also endorsements past colleagues and use it as a way to spark a conversation and make a connection. This is a useful avenue to consider when you are looking for an “inside source” with a prospective employer and one of your connections currently works at the company.
3. Highlight your current skills: You can pick and choose which endorsements you want to keep on your profile, so choose wisely. Remember to highlight your more recent skills so that hiring managers recognize those on your profile first. Also, because skill endorsements cannot be re-arranged by users, it’s important that you’re only accepting ones that are complimentary to your personal online brand.
Here are a few useful links for skill endorsements:
Skill Endorsements Overview
Hiding and Unhiding a Skill Endorsement
Retract a Skill Endorsement That You Gave
Endorsing Another LinkedIn Connection
Tell Us What You Think
What other ways do you use LinkedIn endorsements to your advantage? Share your thoughts on Twitter or in the comments section below.