Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past 15 years, you know that LinkedIn is “the resume” of the millennium. It’s where people go to decide whether or not you’re going to a great fit to work with, or are going to be an utter disaster once they get you onboard.
People prefer to make decisions based on information. And while the list of features and benefits a company (or a person) offers about themselves is helpful, when it comes down to it, they trust “reviews” the most. Hence why we trust TripAdvisor over a hotel’s website. Or we consult Rotten Tomatoes before making any decisions on what movie is worth wasting two hours our lives on. People feel the same way about people. They’ll trust what your references say more than they trust the well-recited lines you feed them in an interview.
“My weaknesses? Oh, I suppose some would say I work “too hard” and don’t prioritize myself above others enough. But I don’t know - I guess I’m just always working for the bigger cause.”
As you work through your career, you should be collecting reviews wherever possible. They’re like Letters of Recommendations from back in the day. But now you don’t have to worry about stationery and signatures and keeping them organized in a neat little file folder in your desk. You can collect them via LinkedIn and they will stay, forever more, singing your praises loud and proud on your profile! For everyone to swoon over.
“Anytime a client sends me kudos, or I get positive feedback on a speaking engagement, I send over a LinkedIn recommendation request. There never feels like a ‘good time’ to ask for one, so do it when you’re on the top of your game.” - Katie Martell, Creator of Buzz and Communication Strategist
Now, what happens when you ask for a review and get the response: No problem. Can you write something up you’d like me to say?
But ‘tis a reality of oh so many Letters of Recommendation in past, and remains a reality today. Still, I am not a fan of giving myself a glowing review (blush!) and signing someone’s name to it. So instead, I prefer to send along a few helpful templates that they can utilize to get inspired. Written about inanimate objects.
Feel free to use them when writing recommendations of your own, or when you get asked that awkward AF question: Write it up yourself, please.
“She makes a great first impression. She’s a very well rounded and balanced individual. Her history and roots give her a uniqueness that she brings to the table in everything she does. Sure, she’s colorful and smells pleasingly, but it goes so much deeper than that. She’s smooth in times of crisis. And she’s bold and risky from time to time too - which is what you need. I highly recommend, if you haven’t already, getting to know her.”
Written about Wine
“Our relationship has been long-standing and full of positives. Sometimes it’s gotten messy between us. But once it’s all said and done and I’ve been able to digest things fully, I’ve always felt satisfied and even energized. He’s always available when I need him, and his rates are very fair. He is a total team player as well - complimenting others around him and collaborating with other flavours to create fresh, unique experiences. He shall continue to be my go-to for years to come. And I’d highly recommend you get your hands on him as soon as possible.”
Written about Chocolate
“She’s the kind of person that just puts you at ease. You feel like you can really get to know her - and submerse yourself in her presence. She’s exceptionally warm. Always bubbly. But ultimately, helps you relax, knowing she’s doing all the hard work (and you usually don’t even notice!). On top of everything, she provides the comfort I always need after a long, hard day.”
Written about a Bubble Bath
And one more thing. Be sure to be actively writing reviews for people you work with as well. Clients. Staff. Agencies. Bosses. You’ve gotta return the favor. It’s nice to do and will increase your chances of getting a reciprocal recommendation by 193%. (I made that stat up, by the way. But it’s probably true.)