LinkedIn Recommendations: “You scratch my back, I scratch yours???”

written by Adam Cupples (@ACupples)

I love LinkedIn. It’s a great tool to reconnect with past colleagues, create new business opportunities, and strengthen relationships. I could go on and on about the positive aspects of it, but let’s face it, what fun would this post be if it was one big, fat LinkedIn love-fest?

Here it is: I hate LinkedIn Recommendations. Always have and I’m guessing, always will. They feel empty to me, here’s why:

1. You scratch my back I scratch yours?

When I see Billy Gates…you know the Microsoft guy, yeah, we’re tight… recommend me, I DON’T want to feel the need to recommend him back — whether he’s trying to save the world or not!

Anyway, from what I see others do out of obligation I feel the need to recommend Billy here to all. Is that helpful for others? Do you recommend others just because they recommended you? If not, do you feel like you’re snubbing them? Doesn’t it make all recommendations meaningless? I think so.

2. Get out the Pom Poms

I know they’re called “recommendations” and they are great if you’re looking for a new job or trying to impress your friends/mom/new girlfriend … but I’m thinking people are beginning to see right through it.

I’m all for supporting friends and colleagues, and would rather do that on Facebook, Twitter, this blog… I guess I thought LinkedIn was different. I have stopped (but never really started) recommending because I don’t want others to think it’s meaningless. Am I way off-base here? Are the recommendations still relevant?