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Want Your Boss to Vouch for You? Here’s the Right Way to Ask for Recommendations
Insights From Mettl Company Insights

Before asking a recommendation from your boss, you must spend time developing and nurturing a professional relationship with them. And when I say professional relationships, it’s completely different from networking or establishing what people call PR. It’s not about displaying your achievements or offering assistance in their tasks, followed by expecting a recommendation in return. Rather, it’s about doing the expected and traveling the extra mile that naturally builds a rapport with your boss. You must allow ample time to your boss, so that they can form a professional judgement or opinion about your skills, work ethics, decision making and other crucial job factors. In other words, prove your mettle first before even thinking about asking a recommendation. Apart from that, structure your discussion around these areas than going vague:

  • Talk in detail about why you need the recommendation and,
  • The platform on which the recommendation will go live and,
  • The purpose that the recommendation serves or whether there is a repercussion angle attached

Remember to talk in-person and not drop an email before you close the discussion. Don’t throw any surprises that your boss might not handle. It’s always better to inform in-person than dropping an email out of the blue. Talking about the how part, get clarity first whether your boss is open to recommendations. If Yes, what is the qualifying criteria to be considered for a recommendation. If you fulfill the criteria, the next step is to explain the purpose and that’s that. The same rule applies for freelancers seeking Linkedin recommendation. Do your research first and follow the above steps to increase your likelihood of receiving a recommendation.

Topics: Career

Originally published September 12 2018,updated October 12 2019

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