Workplace Woes – Roze Knows®

Dear Roze:

I own and operate a small consulting business. It means so much when I get referrals. Some of my best clients have come from referrals. Awhile back, I reconnected with an old friend from my first job out of college. When I told her all about my business, she said she knew of a company that would benefit tremendously from my services, and offered to contact its President, someone she knew real well, to tell him all about my services. I was flattered and so excited. I assumed she was going to inform this guy about my company either with a phone call or a face-to-face interaction.

Fast forward a couple of months. I hadn’t heard anything from my old friend, so I called her to see if she had an update. She told me she sent the guy an email along with my resume but never heard back from him. I was surprised and disappointed. I couldn’t help but wonder why she would only send him an email versus calling or talking to him in person since she thought my services would be so perfect for him and his business.

I chose not to say anything because I didn’t want to come off as ungrateful but I was crushed.

What do you think? Was I expecting too much? Can I fix this?

Referral fell flat

Dear Referral fell flat:

I don’t believe you were expecting too much. When someone offers to recommend you and your services, there’s a certain expectation, especially if you consider the person to be a good friend. That being said, if it makes you feel a bit better, you’re not alone. I have not only heard of others having similar experiences, but I have also heard of individuals who never received any kind of referral that had been offered or promised to them.

I can’t say there’s a sure-fire fix, but I believe you can do something to possibly turn things around. Since you are not only good friends with the woman, but since she made the offer versus you requesting it, I suggest you have a frank discussion with her. Let her know you had hoped she would speak to the guy and tell him things about you and your services that can’t necessarily be gleaned from your resume attached to an email. Then ask if she wouldn’t mind following up with the guy by calling him. Hopefully, your request will be well-received and convey how a verbal conversation can be a more genuine, impactful referral.

Everyone should approach referrals with the Golden Rule in mind.

© 2018 Rozanne R. Worrell

Workplace Woes – Roze Knows®

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