This week I’d like to talk about the current trend to tag a persons name in a post when someone on LinkedIn or a Facebook business group page asks for a recommendation. While I understand this comes from a good space of trying to help both the original poster and the person being recommended it doesn’t really do either.
When a persons name is tagged they become just another name on a list that usually runs into dozens of people. Here are some challenges with this approach.
- For the person who is looking for the supplier they now have to trawl through a list of names.
- They will then also get people on the list telling them about their product and service and how they should use them with no real evidence to base this claim on unless they then check each person out themselves.
- The person who’s name has been tagged now has to check in with the original poster and find out all about what their wants and needs are for the specification of the job they require doing.
The following I believe is a much more effective way as it gives your recommendations more chance of success of standing out from the crowd and raises your credibility with both the person looking for the supplier and the supplier you eventually recommend.
The first thing to do is to send the person looking for the supplier a direct message asking them some questions about their request. For example, do they have a deadline for the work to be completed? Do they require certain qualifications from the person completing the work? What if any, are the specific technical requirements for the work? Are there any budgetary constraints? Is the work for them or for one of their contacts? Where about in the country does the work need doing?
Taking this approach really helps you find the right person for the job and shows the person who posted the original request you’re happy to put in some effort to find the right person from your contact sphere, someone who you believe is the best fit for them and they can also get on with their day to day work. The person you recommend can also get on with what they are doing and you now have two people who value you and your efforts that little bit more.
This approach really works for everyone involved and as an added bonus, the supplier is more likely to come to you first the next time they need anyone. This means your contact sphere and your influence within it grows too, a real win win win.