If you’ve worked with awesome co-workers or bosses, you generally are open to supporting or being a reference for them during their careers.
Additionally, you may even want to explore writing a LinkedIn recommendation, which can give them a significant boost in trust among hiring managers.
But how do you write the perfect LinkedIn recommendation for someone? Sounding genuine and writing may seem time consuming, but it’s much easier than you think. Follow my insights, tips, and examples below to get started.
Why You Should Write LinkedIn Recommendations
Before I jump into the tips, you might be wondering why you should even write a LinkedIn recommendation for someone.
This feature is great because it provides real reviews of people in a simple but professional way. And job seekers want these on their profiles so recruiters and hiring managers can see what value they bring to an open position.
While your resume and cover letter will be more important – a good LinkedIn profile with recommendations can be an added bonus. This can be helpful in super competitive roles or industries where applicants really need to stand out.
So why should you write one?
- It’s a good way to show support for current or former colleagues.
- It helps individuals stand out in a professional manner, especially if they are on the job hunt.
- You can reconnect with former co-workers. They’ll love seeing a recommendation, which can spark conversation and potential networking opportunities.
- You appear to others as someone that loves to support and help others. Always a good look to future employers.
- Often, your co-worker or former colleague will return the favor. Of course that shouldn’t be your main intention, but generally people love to help others. And having recommendations of your own looks good to recruiters and hiring managers.
How to Write A LinkedIn Recommendation
Writing the perfect recommendation on LinkedIn for friend or colleague doesn’t need to be time consuming. But, you also want to ensure it’s impactful for them.
However you might be hitting that writers block and unsure how to structure the content. Here’s some tips to help you create an amazing recommendation.
1. Make the opening line “pop.”
What’s the hook of your recommendation that entices someone to read what you wrote? You want captivate someone to read the rest of the copy. You don’t need to be the best copywriter in the world, but just think about what would grab your attention.
Ex. Delivering $2.5M in pipeline in one month – that’s just one amazing feat John did while I worked with him at Company X.
2. What’s your connection to this person?
Make it clear in your LinkedIn recommendation how you know the person. Whether that was someone on your team, a manager, a colleague from a past job, etc. It is also a good idea to share what projects you may have worked on together too. This will show readers that you do have a good sense about this person and their quality of work.
3. Call out their amazing traits.
I’d focus on two or three of the best traits the person you are recommending has. What makes them such a solid person that any company would be lucky to have on their team? Try to avoid being too broad, even if they are smart, kind, or hardworking. It just blends into the void.
Ex. I was always impressed by how flexible and adaptable Alice was on client projects. No matter how many pivots or requests came through, she was quick to move and make results happen.
4. Highlight a major contribution or achievement.
What can you highlight about the amazing work this person did? How did it impact the team and company? Being able to answer and highlight some notable achievement makes a recommendation much more impactful.
Ex. Tom was pivotal in helping the sales team reach their $5M closed-won goal in multiple quarters, which helped the company receive their Series A funding to fuel growth further.
5. Hint at who they are as a person.
Beyond this persons hard work and achievements, what are they like to work with and as a general human? People want to work with nice and personable co-workers, so highlight this in your recommendation.
Ex. Beyond her amazing work and skills, Mary will always go out of her way to help someone or jump in to get a project done. It doesn’t matter if it’s her project or job duty, she’ll offer support whenever it’s needed.
6. Reaffirm your personal recommendation.
It’s time to wrap up your recommendation. In this last part, just reaffirm why you wrote this and why you personally standby what you wrote for this person. Think of it as a simple closing to reminder the recruiter reading it why this person is an asset.
Ex. Dan is an exceptional content marketer and a humble human. He has my upmost respect and I would highly recommend him for any role he applies to or that someone has open in his field.
LinkedIn Recommendation Examples
Now that you have the basics to writing your own LinkedIn recommendation, I wanted to share some examples. Below are a few real examples from my own profile and one I also wrote for a past co-worker.
This recommendation is from a former colleague. She was a bit more detailed and thorough, which I appreciated so much. It’s up to you how much to write, but keep in mind that you do have a 3,000 character limit.
Here is one I wrote for a former co-worker. She is on the job hunt and I wanted to help provide support during her search. Plus, she was fantastic at her job.
And here was an older recommendation someone gave when I was doing freelance magazine writing. As you can see by the year, LinkedIn recommendations have been around for a long time. This example is short and sweet!
Common LinkedIn Recommendation Mistakes to Avoid
You want to write the strongest recommendation you can. It not only helps the other person, but encourages them to write one for you as well.
Here are some things to avoid when writing a LinkedIn recommendation.
- Being too detailed. Being thorough and highlighting specific examples of the work quality is great, but you do not need to max out the 3,000 characters. Make it easy to read and get to the points you want to make.
- Using vague language. Avoid the fluff in your recommendations as it really does not provide much value. Again, provide specific examples during the time you worked with this person and don’t use cliche statements.
- Don’t make things up. I know you want to support your colleagues and friends, but lies or exaggerating their work and skills does more harm than good.
How Do I Publish a LinkedIn Recommendation?
Providing a LinkedIn recommendation to someone is pretty easy. But if you have never done this before, I’ll show you the steps once you are logged into your profile.
1. Go to your profile and scroll to recommendations.
This is where you’ll find any recommendations you received, have given, and even pending ones.
2. Click the “+” sign between the “Show all pending” and pencil icon.
When you click this, it will give you the option to request a recommendation or give one to someone you know.
3. You will then enter the name of the person you want to write a recommendation.
LinkedIn makes it super easy to start typing someone’s name and finding who you’d like to write something awesome about.
4. Then you’ll be taken to fill out the details and submit your recommendation.
Once you submit, the other person will be alerted and can review it before accepting it to their profile. And viola! Done.
Looking for more LinkedIn related content?
- How Do You Find Remote Jobs on LinkedIn?
- “Open to Work” on LinkedIn [The Complete Guide]
- How to Respond to a Recruiter on LinkedIn [With Examples]
- 5 Effective LinkedIn Headline Examples for Job Seekers