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I work for a fast-growing startup and I just found out that my direct manager (leading a team of ~25 people) will be leaving the company. I'm fairly confident that he's leaving because of the excellent opportunity he was offered, rather than internal conflicts or similar.

We have a good relationship and I know he thinks highly of me. He is also aware that I have been trying to change a few things for myself within the company (salary, career direction). At the same time, I am not currently looking to leave the company, and my boss knew that as well.

I've heard LinkedIn recommendations are typically given at the end of a business relationship (which would be now). Is it okay to ask him for a recommendation at this point?

My gut feeling is that he would gladly give me a great recommendation. My main hesitations are:

  1. Timing - Do I wait till he's actually out the door, or ask now (a week before he leaves)?
  2. He seems pretty loyal to the company, but he clearly values career growth more (since he himself is leaving). Even though he is not going to be my boss soon, do I need to be concerned that a recommendation request will get interpreted (somewhat incorrectly) as "I'm looking for a new job"?
  3. I don't want it to give off the wrong impression about how soon I might leave (for him, or for any current coworkers who might see my profile). Like I mentioned, I'm pretty happy at my job. There are a few things I'd like to see changed, but currently I'm not actively looking for a new job (although, granted, that could always change relatively quickly). Will having his recommendation on my profile prove to be a bad move from the perspective of those currently at the company?
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    Don't overthink it - just ask him (and offer to write one for him too, of course) – Mawg says reinstate Monica Aug 16 '18 at 6:35
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Is it okay to ask him for a recommendation at this point?

Probably better now than later. After starting a new job, people usually are busy focusing on getting up to speed etc., and there is nothing like asking in person.

do I need to be concerned that a recommendation request will get interpreted (somewhat incorrectly) as "I'm looking for a new job"?

Asking for recommendations doesn't directly mean that a person is looking for a job. It is a way to capture someone else's view of you doing great work. I think it is also well understood that a LinkedIn recommendation is for general purpose use. (it stays on a user's profile and isn't for a single use)

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I think it is an absolutely great idea. I have done the same in the past when I was leaving and when I had others leaving.

The only reservation would be if he was leaving on bad terms and held some sort of grudge which you feel is not the case.

If he is a decent human being he would most likely do the right thing and give you a great recommendation.

Might be a nice thought to offer to write a good recommendation for him as well.

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Is it okay to ask him for a recommendation at this point?

Yes.

I've give out recommendations in similar situations many times.

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