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LinkedIn Skills And Experience Endorsements: A Credibility Problem?

This is a guest post by Greg Johnson about LinkedIn skills and endorsements.

LinkedIn skills, Personal Brand, Job Search, Career Management, Subject Matter Expertise, Career Success, Finding a Job, Getting Promoted, Landing Clients, Getting that contract, LinkedIn, Skills, Experience, Endorsements, Professional Associations, Blogging, LinkedIn Groups,

Ever since LinkedIn introduced the Skills and Experience section along with the ability to endorse others for their LinkedIn skills and experience, it has been a topic that has generated a lot of negative response. LinkedIn group discussions are full of people complaining about the lack of credibility in the endorsements. And how stupid they think the whole feature is. Every time I teach LinkedIn, it is a hot topic of discussion on how should people handle something that on the surface really looks meaningless. After all, how can someone who has never worked with you endorse you for a skill you have on your profile?

There is no doubt that some of the features of LinkedIn skills and experience are problematic. Including the fact that when you visit someone’s profile, LinkedIn chooses some skills and suggests you endorse the person. The problem here is that most people do not really think this through. They just click to endorse on the suggest skills. When this feature came out, because I saw problems in how people were responding, I wrote a blog on how to strategically and effectively use the feature, including how to endorse people for skills that you really know about. However this doesn’t address the issue of people endorsing you when they do not know you. This brings us back to the question of “How can someone endorse me if they have never worked with me?”

But this question forgets one of the most important facts about career management. Your next job, promotion or opportunity will happen not because of what you know. Not even who you know. But who knows you. And what is their perception of you as a professional and subject matter expert. Therefore a better question would be:

“Why don’t more people know more about me and my subject matter expertise?”

Everyday, people are finding out that putting your nose to the grind stone. focusing on your tasks and project just doesn’t work. So what should you be doing that will increase your relevance, and spread your reputation as a professional and trusted authority? Tim Tyrell-Smith gave us some great information on how to become a person of influence in his blog. Engaging in LinkedIn group discussions and blogging in your areas of expertise are especially effective. In addition to leveraging Tim’s advice, the following are critical strategies for maximizing your career opportunities.

Continuing Education

The speed of change in today’s economy is faster than ever. As a professional, it is critical that you continuously update your knowledge through both formal and informal education.

Professional Associations

Kelly Donovan wrote a great blog on this subject. It is not enough to just belong to these organizations to network, but speak and serve on boards and committees, in a position of visibility where people will see and experience interaction with you as a trusted authority


Kelly also wrote a blog on why you need a mentor and how to get one. This is great information, and should be part of every professional’s strategy. At the same time, mentoring and sharing your insights on what you have learned to mentor newer generations will enhance your reputation It will also positively impact the success of your company.

All of these are career management strategies that are essential if you are serious about having career success. If you implement these strategies into your regular career management, your reputation for your LinkedIn skills and expertise will naturally spread. This generates greater opportunities for your career. A natural side effect will be an increase of endorsements by people you didn’t work with.

Are you taking these steps to maximize your opportunities, or are you wondering why people might be endorsing you?

Written by: Greg Johnson
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Categories: Using Social Media

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