LinkedIn endorsements: a dime a dozen or valuable?

LinkedIn EndorsementsTaking a break from drafting a sustainability report about a diamond mine, I was enjoying an endorsement by someone who has been observing me dealing with biodiversity and stakeholder engagement. I cherish it along with my other ca 200 endorsements (many thanks!). But are such endorsements gimmicky or do they provide insights about core skills, experiences & peer network?

Shortlink: http://wp.me/p27qSt-u9

As Sheryl Smolkin blogged recently on www.moneyville.ca/blog, LinkedIn introduced the endorsement feature only in September 2012. She notes that LinkedIn stats suggest that this feature has been a huge success: there have been over 550 million endorsements and 10 million are given every day.

Does this mean that, unlike recommendations, endorsements are a dime a dozen and have no value? This is perhaps why Sheryl also points out that her conversations with recruiters showed that endorsements are viewed as “gimmicky” and are generally ignored.

But for me, a CSR and ESIA advisor at Prizma who benefits from recommendations by associates, partners, peers and clients to find or participate in his next interesting assignment, the views of recruiters are not particularly critical. I feel that, having collected a few, endorsements suggest that some of my skills and experiences highlighted in my LinkedIn profile are not just a figment of my imagination. Instead, they underline that my profile is verifiably real, and that my skills and experiences are recognized by my LinkedIn peers. This is leveraged further by the fact that, by and-large, my endorsements come from credible professionals who are recognized in their own peer groups.

Based on the LinkedIn endorsements received to date, my 'Top 5' skills and area of expertise are the following:

  1. Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR)
  2. Sustainability
  3. EIA Environmental and Social Impact Assessment)
  4. Sustainability Reporting, and
  5. Stakeholder Engagement.

There is one more important thing. I feel that endorsements I have received allow me to see how others rank my core skills and areas of expertise - and not just to consider my own judgement. Do you feel endorsements on my LinkedIn profile are gimmicky, are skewed in some way or do they tell you a story about my skills, experience and peer recognition?