Networking/Business Communication Question

Discussion in 'Business, Careers & Education' started by MrG, Dec 14, 2011.

  1. MrG

    MrG Senior member

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    I'm a bit conflicted about something, and I'm hoping those of you who are a bit more experienced in the business world can give me your thoughts, experience, advice, etc.

    A little back story before my question:

    About six weeks ago I reached out to an old friend of my mother's for some advice on a particular career path I've long been considering. He has experience with a number of companies in the field, albeit not precisely in the practice area I'm targeting. I dropped him an email, and he was very receptive, even discussing ultimately "reaching out" to some of his contacts. Before he did that, however, he asked that I look into a few of the companies where he knew people so that I could get a feel for the type of work they do, and which ones I thought would be a good fit for me. I spent some time doing this, and wrote back with my thoughts, to which he responded that I'd provided him with good information. He asked for some time to think and told me he had some ideas.

    All of the above happened very quickly - he'd usually get back to me within about 24 hours - and all of the talk of using his connections came from his end without any prompting from me. However, the last correspondence I received was about a month ago.

    Given he was so willing to help, I'm kind of feeling like it might be appropriate to get in touch with him. He's very busy, and I'm sure he's even busier during the holidays. Also, my mom has told me he can be sort of "hot and cold" with regard to correspondence, and she mentioned that there will be times they'll exchange a bunch of messages for a while, followed by months without contact. The way it was left was that he looked like we were going to move forward on some ideas, but he hasn't been in touch to follow up.

    Given all of the above, I've considered contacting him as a sort of follow-up to our conversation, but this is where I'm a bit conflicted. On the one hand, I don't want to be perceived as a pest, or inconsiderate of his schedule. On the other hand, I know how busy things can get, and I kind of feel like getting in touch would both serve as a display of initiative and bit of a reminder.

    So, what do you guys think? Would getting in touch be pushing it, or is it an appropriate way to make sure so much time doesn't pass between contact that the whole thing sort of fizzles? I'd be interested in hearing experience from all sides - whether you've been the person doing the contacting or the one being contacted.

    Thanks in advance!
     
    Last edited: Dec 14, 2011
  2. yjeezle

    yjeezle Senior member

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    dude nag the crap out of him. whatever helps you get what you need.
     
  3. pseudonym

    pseudonym Senior member

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    Follow up, but be polite is what I learned, through and through.
     
  4. MrG

    MrG Senior member

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    Haha. Fair point. For him it's just a potentially-annoying email, for me it could be a new career path.


    I'm definitely going to go out of my way to be polite, especially because he is a family friend who has been very kind and helpful. I'll have to sit down this weekend and take some time to get the words just right. I really don't want the message to read as "dude, you totally sounded like you were getting back to me. What happened?"
     
  5. Thomas

    Thomas Senior member

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    If you're serious about this, and want to be perceived as serious about this, you'll follow up.

    Good luck!
     
  6. ter1413

    ter1413 Senior member

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    Stop being a wuss and follow up!!!
     
  7. Joffrey

    Joffrey Senior member

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    You have to be persistent. I'm not particularly senior in my position and I get a little lazy when responding to emails from people seeking career help. Plus I forget. Plus I think, if they want it so bad they'll email me. Be politely persistent.
     
  8. MrG

    MrG Senior member

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    I am, very, and definitely would like to be perceived as such, so it's a follow up for me!

    Thanks! I'm not sure what might come of this, but he's a great contact who has been very willing to help.


    :laugh:

    Will do!


    That's what I'm thinking. We all get busy, and I'm, understandably, probably not at the top of his to-do list. Time for me to show that I'm still very interested.
     
  9. Blackhood

    Blackhood Senior member

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    Hey Dude, Hope everything is well, I haven't heard from you in a few weeks. I was wondering if anything came up with your old contacts that I might be able to follow up on? Cheers, Dave/Frank/Ed
     
  10. Verniza

    Verniza Senior member

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    Get in touch with him, ask him out and buy him a meal or a drink. Everything is always easier when done face to face and it proves that you are sincere about his help by making a trip down.

    He's just a phone call away, DON'T HESITATE.
     
  11. Thomas

    Thomas Senior member

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    Speaking of follow-up, be sure to send a thank you note afterwards.
     

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