If you work with your clients on creating or enhancing their LinkedIn profiles, you may have seen something new from LinkedIn in the past week or so. Called "LinkedIn Endorsements," the enhancement builds on the LinkedIn "Skills" categories by giving your LinkedIn connections the opportunity to "validate" your capabilities.
I first came across the "Endorsements" option when accepting a new connection request. Up popped this box:
LinkedIn displays the Skills your contact may exhibit, and allows you to either endorse all of them (simply click the yellow "Endorse" button), remove Skills (click on the "x" next to the skill), or add additional Skills (type in a Skill).
You may also encounter a pop-up box when interacting with a connection's profile. It will pull up the individual's name and a single Skill. If you click the blue "Endorse" link, it will add your Endorsement to the individual's profile.
Click on your own profile, and you can see which of your Skills have been endorsed.
Your Skills are listed, along with the number of people who have Endorsed you for each Skill, and their photos (if displayed with their profile).
You can also conduct blanket Endorsements:
You can choose the yellow button to "Endorse all 4" or you can click the individual blue "Endorse" buttons in each square to Endorse a specific skills. Or, you can remove an individual Skill Endorsement by clicking the "x" in the upper right-hand corner of the box.
At the NRWA Conference in Charleston last week, LinkedIn expert Joshua Waldman mentioned the increasing emphasis LinkedIn is adding for Skills. The use of Endorsements to validate Skills is the next step in this evolution. Skills (and validated Skills especially) are useful for recruiters, who are one of the largest audiences funding LinkedIn.