About LinkedIn Endorsements

how to turn off linkedin endorcementsOriginally posted in The National Law Journal on June 10, 2013

Here is a letter I received from Ellis Mirsky, executive director of the Network of Trial Law Firms:

“Is there a way to turn off or reject endorsements on LinkedIn? I find that people (many, almost daily) are endorsing me for skills I don’t have. I’d like to shut that down. People are using it to generate reciprocal endorsements, which I refuse to do. Endorsements on LinkedIn are becoming popularity contests. How many can one run up? He has more than she, etc. And they’re meaningless. Anyone can endorse anyone else for anything, without any check on the system. I’d like to see it eliminated.”

It’s a great question and one that I’m hearing a lot. For almost a year, LinkedIn has been prompting every one of your connections to endorse you for your expertise, even if the endorser doesn’t really know you and is just going by stuff on your LinkedIn profile. These seem meaningless at best and unethical at worst, as Robert Ambrogi has explained on his LawSites. For practical purposes, it’s a snap to remove endorsements that you don’t want. Simply log in to LinkedIn, click on “Profile” and then “Edit Profile.” Scroll down to the endorsements section and “x” out any you don’t want. For strategic purposes, I recommend that you eliminate endorsements that don’t brand you in a specific way. If your specialty is employment law, it won’t really help to accept endorsements for immigration or personal injury. Read more

Three Simple Ways to Connect

how to connect on LinkedIn

Originally posted in The National Law Journal on May 27, 2013

“Which button do I push on LinkedIn for business development?” The chief marketing officer of a major law firm described to me fielding this question recently. Lawyers often look for ways to get other people to do their marketing for them, so the question behind the question was: “Do I really have to work at developing my business if I use LinkedIn?”

Well, yes, you do. But LinkedIn has introduced some features that give users more opportunities to gain visibility and business.

The first thing is to tap into your alumni network from law school and undergraduate days. We all have relationships that we should have maintained but didn’t, and now LinkedIn has developed a search tool that helps you reconnect with your classmates. You just go to the “Contacts” pull-down menu and select your alma mater. Up pops a list of people who also studied there at the same time as you. You can break this list down by city, company name or industry. Read more