Endorsements have been a little polemic – as well as problematic – since their introduction by LinkedIn over 18 months ago as a way for people to quickly leave a recommendation or praise others for skills and expertise that they possess.
There have been a huge range and split in terms of opinions as to their validity and use – I have published my own thoughts on them in a previous article. One of the negative aspects has been that LinkedIn continually pushes connections visiting your profile to endorse you for certain skills, some of which may not even be present on your profile. They also encourage others to endorse via email which can also prove annoying and even embarrassing to some.
So, as a way to moderate this and give all of us additional control over this section of our Personal Profile page – our key tool on LinkedIn – LinkedIn has introduced an additional control which offers us the option of opting out of certain of these activities. This now gives you the opportunity to manage how and if you are promoted to your connections.
If you go to your “Edit Profile” page and then scroll down to the Skills & Endorsements section, when you click on the ‘pencil’ symbol to edit that section you will be faced with the following;
1. This allows you to hide the Skills & Endorsements section so that it doesn’t appear at all on your Profile. While I’m not a great fan of Endorsements, given the “TripAdvisor” type environment we live in, people feel reassured when they see others have essentially give you a thumbs up for certain skills, so I would leave this on unless you feel strongly otherwise.
2. People are encouraged to endorse you and LinkedIn can send out messages to encourage this and will often make a box appear with suggested skills to endorse when 1st level connections visit your page – turning this off should stop both of these practices.
3. Conversely, when you visit other connections’ profiles, you are asked to endorse them. You now have the opportunity to turn off that function – it doesn’t mean that you can no loner endorse people, simply that you won’t be “encouraged” to do so any more.
4. The default position is that when someone endorses you, you are informed via email. You have always been able to turn off this email from your Settings page, but now you can also do so from your Profile page as well – endorsements should still get flagged up in the Notifications area in the top right-hand section of the site.
So, no major changes as such but the opportunity to control more accurately what does actually happen with regard to Endorsements and how they are built up on your Profile page – of course, if you really want to tell people that you appreciate their work and skills than a Recommendation will always convey that message to much better effect!