Letter of recommendation is a great boost to your portfolio and by any chance if you can convince your ex – employer to write a recommendation letter for you, then nothing can beat that. If you are aiming to bag the dream job of yours, then you will have to know how to slip in the references and make your potential employer aware of the fact that you have some very good references. It is important that you know the technique of using the references correctly.
The letter of recommendation, if used properly will open up new doors of opportunities. Therefore, when you are asking for a recommendation letter it becomes highly crucial that you have a clear idea about whom to ask and how to ask. You will have to talk to them in person about that, as leaving a voicemail or an email won’t work.
1. Getting it straight:
Now that you have the names ready on your mind, whom you can ask for the letter of recommendation, you will have to fix timing and not just that, your approach also matters a lot. When you meet this person face to face, it will be easier for him to clarify his doubts and provide you with the letter of recommendation that will help you in your job search. You have to explain to the reference what your requirements are and why you need the letter of recommendation. It is always nice to ask the person whether he is comfortable in writing you a letter of recommendation! If they feel they don’t know you much, then they might not find it feasible to write the recommendation letter for you. In one way you will also be assured that people who know you well and have agreed to write a recommendation letter will write positive things about you only.
Don’t ask him to complete the letter of recommendation the very next day, instead provide him some time, a minimum of two weeks will be just fine for him, but if you can, then give him a month’s time to write the letter. He has his own deadlines to meet and projects to be completed, so if you do not give them enough time, then they will end up writing any which ways possible and that is not what you want, correct? Moreover, you must always keep in mind that they are doing a favor, so in case they decline your request, then also you must thank them for their time.
2. Whom to ask for:
If you are changing your job, then the best person to ask for a letter of recommendation is your supervisor. Your supervisor knows you well personally and professionally as well, therefore, it will be easier for you too. You don’t have to go through several names of references to pick up one name that will be perfect for this job. If you are in touch with someone from your past employment, then you can also try your luck there. If your past employer still has good rapport with you, then he will surely oblige. The client with whom you have worked closely can also be the perfect choice. Then your professors or the vendors or the business acquaintances can also write you a letter of recommendation.
How to Ask for the Letter of Recommendation?
1. Notice Period:
When you are serving the notice period, it is the best time to ask for the letter of recommendation. Once you are out of the office premises, it will be hard for you to connect with them or chase them down for the letter of recommendation. But, if you can bag the letter of recommendation beforehand, then you don’t have to worry about getting a recommendation for your next job.
2. Positive or Negative:
It is important to know how to ask for the recommendation letter. You cannot just ask your manager whether he will write a recommendation letter for you or not. This is not the right way to approach for a recommendation letter. Almost anybody can write a letter, but the main issue is the subject matter. You will have to ask them whether they know you well enough to write a good recommendation letter. This way you are specifically asking them to write you a positive recommendation letter and if they say no, then it is good for you because you can be sure that nothing negative will be jotted down on the paper.
3. Sample Recommendation Letter:
It is always better to hand them a copy of the resume as they will have up to date information about your skills and experience, which will help them in writing a better recommendation letter for you. In case, they ask you to provide them with some sample recommendation letter, then be prepared for that as well.
Best Tips to Get the Letter of Recommendation:
Just keep the recommendation letter on file, even when the employer hasn’t asked for it. It ensures that you stand out in the crowd and make a strong impact in your evaluation process. If you are in a fix about how and where to start, then here are some tips that will help you in acquiring the letter of recommendation.
1. Select the managers who have knowledge of your potential:
It is one of the most important things when you are asking for a letter of recommendation because if someone doesn’t know you well, then how come he or she will be able to write anything positive about you? Therefore, ask your manager who has worked with you closely and have witnessed your growth as well. If he is someone who have been instrumental in your growth, then ask him to pen down his thoughts about you through a letter of recommendation.
2. Give him some time:
Provide the person with some time to write you a letter of recommendation. It is not that easy to write just about anything on paper, therefore, extend some kind of consideration in terms of time.
3. Talk to them face to face:
When you talk to them face to face, then they have a clear idea about what you want, what your dreams are and as they already know about your strengths and weaknesses, so it will be easy for them to come up with a strong letter of recommendation for you.
4. Provide them your updated resume:
Your resume has all the relevant information about your skills and experiences. It will be a strong support for the person who is about to write you a letter of recommendation.
5. Make them aware of the guidelines:
It is not necessary for your manager to know how the format of recommendation letter should be. Therefore, if you can provide them with the pointers, which they need to include in the recommendation letter and the format that they have to maintain, then it will be of a great help for your reference.
The recommendation letter must include your strengths, job responsibilities, position held, talent, skill, dedication and whether you are able to work in a team along with your decision making capabilities. All this information will make your recommendation letter complete and fruitful.