Are You Missing Out on LinkedIn Recommendations?

LinkedIn recommendations should be from someone that actually knows you personally, or that you’ve worked with or ministered to.  The goal of a LinkedIn recommendation is to give those that don’t know you an idea of your expertise, your character, your empathy, etc., and the kind of work or ministry they might expect to receive if they contact you.  The more credible the source, the more value the recommendation will have, and the more informative the recommendation, the better the response will be so it’s important that your recommendations portray exactly what you believe will be helpful in meeting your LinkedIn (and ministry) goals.

The best way to receive LinkedIn recommendations is to send 2-3 recommendations a week to your current connections.  When they receive them, they will be asked if they would like to send you one.  Even if they don’t respond on their own, they will be more likely to send you a recommendation when you ask them at a later date.

How Many and How Often?

How many recommendations you receive doesn’t matter because you can post just the ones that will benefit your current needs, and change them as often as needed.  You should have enough recommendations to tell others what you want them to know about you (so they will be encouraged to call you, use your services, engage your ministry, etc.).

It’s important to have enough recommendations that it doesn’t look like they only came from a few close friends, but not so many that they will be ignored.  A good guideline is 10% of your connections.  Remember, you can select the ones you want to show on your profile, and save others for later use.

What if I Don’t Have Enough Recommendations?

If you are not receiving enough recommendations, it’s time to ask for them.  Remember, requests should be sent to those that actually know you and have worked with you. 

Don’t send out bulk requests, it’s best to have your recommendations spread out over a long period of time, and continually coming in.  This keeps your profile alive, allows your contacts to see you are continually being recommended, and a continuous stream of recommendations is more realistic of a thriving ministry.  That’s why I say to send only 2-3 recommendations a week, and the same goes for the requests for recommendations that you send.

Getting the Recommendations You Need

If you receive a recommendation that doesn’t fit what you are trying to present, don’t hesitate to ask the sender to modify their recommendation.  Perhaps they knew you in a past assignment that doesn’t represent what you are involved in now.  Most people that recommend you want to help you, and will be willing to reword their recommendation, especially if you suggest the wording you would prefer.

Sending Recommendation Requests

When you send a recommendation request, make it easy for them to fulfill your request by suggesting some things they might include.

Begin your request with something like:  “I’m sending this request to ask you for a short recommendation of my work for my LinkedIn profile.  I’d especially appreciate your including some examples of my work (ministry) with you.  To make this as easy as possible, I’ve included a draft that you can use or edit to make it your own.  You might also want to view other’s recommendations that I’ve posted on my profile at

(Include a short draft of the kind of recommendation you’d like to receive).

Bottom Line

Make sure the recommendations you send, and the suggestions you request others to include in their recommendations of you are honest.

Never send a “Canned” LinkedIn request.  If you just click on “Request Recommendations” tab (under Profile / Recommendations on the menu bar) your message will read:

“I’m sending this to ask you for a brief recommendation of my work that I can include in my LinkedIn profile. If you have any questions, let me know.
Thanks in advance for helping me out.”

It’s not that the canned request is wrong, but I’m sure you will agree that it’s impersonal.  If you personalize your request, you can expect a more personal (and helpful) recommendation.  If you give them suggestions, you have a better chance of getting a quick response that includes the details that you want to show.  (The same goes for LinkedIn invitations!)


Any recommendation is NOT necessarily better than NO recommendations!  Good recommendations are a key factor in getting your LinkedIn profile to help you accomplish your goals and they deserve some of your time to achieve great results.  Be proactive in sending great recommendations to your connections, and make sure your connections know when you need recommendations and what kind of recommendations will help you!


As always, thank you for reading Linked4Ministry.  If you are new here, the best way to receive all the new posts is to subscribe for e-mail updates at the top right.  

If you have been following Linked4Ministry and find it helpful, please consider sharing it with other ministry partners that it could benefit.  It’s easy to do by clicking on the following buttons, and it’s OK to click more than one !

Bill Bender
Linked4Ministry & Anothen Life Ministries


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