The won't get back to me

Hi Dem,

I'm not sure how to handle this. I ask all Candidates for Referrals but more and more they are just telling me they'll Email me with names. I wait and wait but almost never get a reply. I don't want to be a pest and call them every day. How would you handle this situation?


Most often, a promise of a future email is a safe way for a candidate to avoid giving you names. At the very least, it's procrastination. I would first try to fight it by saying:

"I appreciate your willingness to help. It's my experience that we are all working with too few hours in the day. My reality is that when someone promises to email me networking opportunities, more often than not, I inadvertently fall off the radar screen. Let's take a moment now to brainstorm together for people that I can bring value to."

If you still can't get your names, let this be your opportunity to impress them with your follow-up:

"Great, I will look out for your email. My success relies on this type of networking. If I don't hear from you by tomorrow afternoon, I'll check back in with you to remind you".

Very often, once they realize they will have to field another call from you, they decide to look for a name now to avoid your follow-up. The reality is, our business is predicated on persistence. If you do find yourself stuck with having to accept a promise for emailed referrals, another way to encourage the referrals is to email them, DAILY. Set an appointment in your outlook to remind you to drop a brief reminder each day. Here's how it's going to go:

Day 1:

Subject Line: Thanks for looking through your network.

Dear NAME,

Thank you so much for digging into your network to help connect me with someone with a background in [XYZ]. Looking forward to your email.

Day 2:

Subject Line: Help - I'm sitting in the hot seat!

Dear NAME,

My search is heating up - have any people come to mind that I can reach out to?

Day 3:

Subject Line: Dazzling you with my persistence.

Dear NAME,

You must be pleased to see how tenacious I am in my day to day business operations! Some day that tenacity will pay off when I'm working as a resource for you. Any thoughts on people who I can share my search with?

Hopefully, you can put these emails into templates and with a couple of keystrokes you can apply a little friendly pressure that makes them feel like you DESERVE the referral.

You may not get them all, but you'll get more than next to never.