Jul 30, 2015

LinkedIn endorsements are stupid



When LinkedIn launched the concept of Skills Endorsements, a lot of social media professionals, including me, said it was a bad idea and that the concept of public testimonials was more than enough to indicate a user's skills. The argument was that the Endorsements would basically be like Facebook Likes, turn into a popularity contest and would end up hurting LinkedIn in the long run.

While we have not yet gotten to that stage, what percentage of recruiters and head hunters actually pay credence to the number of endorsements listed on a user's profile? I have professional peers, past colleagues and former students often endorsing me, which is great as I've worked with them and their feedback means a lot to me.

However, I've also been receiving endorsements from users, based both in Mauritius and abroad, who have never worked with me and don't know anything about me other than what I've decided to put up on my profile. Do they expect me to reciprocate and endorse them too? The fact is that unless I have personally worked with someone and admire their work, I will never endorse them as it would also reflect badly on me. 

This does even even take into consideration the fact that LinkedIn's endorsements are basically generated and populated by the users. For example, I have been endorsed for both "Social Media" and "Social Media Marketing" when they are the same thing. Or does the "Social Media" one simply mean that I'm good at just maintaining my personal profile on Facebook. But then the endorsement would still be a terrible one as I rarely log into my Facebook account, less alone post anything, and closed my Twitter account several months ago.

Unfortunately, I cannot just turn off the endorsements (LinkedIn does have the option) as this would mean weeding out those that I feel I've deserved from my colleagues and other people I have worked with. The ability to management endorsements and show only those I want is also great but it gets cumbersome after some time and feels more like an option to get me to log in daily.

Which I'm totally not doing!