Friendship is Golden

Posted on June 9th, 2010 by

We all need friends – and when you are in the midst of a job search, they can be especially important to give you some emotional support and a chance to laugh for hours and de-stress.  And of course, friends can offer great job leads through their own connections.  But be aware of these potential mistakes when mixing business and friendship..
– Lead into a job search request – don’t go straight for the kill.  Rather than bluntly telling your friend how they can find you a job, make sure you take time to catch up on their life.  This might seem obvious, but desperation can make people do crazy things – including giving the impression that all they care about is what the friend can do for them.  Don’t let yourself succumb to this!!
– Your friend doesn’t keep a detailed journal of your professional activities.  It’s up to you to give them a brief recap of what you’ve been up to and what you’ve accomplished so that they know how to introduce you to their connections.
– No hijacking your friends’ LinkedIn connections.  While you may be freaking out that they know the CEO of your dream company, don’t ask for an introduction right away.  Tell your friend about your career goals and hope that they offer to pass on your resume.  If they do, then you can ask to be introduced to the exec.  If they decline, respect their wishes.
– Unless you worked with your friend, they know nothing about your work performance.  Your friends know and love your best qualities but they can’t speak to how you handle your job on a daily basis.  Don’t ask them for a professional reference request – on LinkedIn or elsewhere – the best you will get is a weak endorsement that brings down your credibility.
– Make sure you are friends with those you make requests of.  If you are randomly lurking on Facebook and come across the guy in the back of your tenth grade science class who apparently now works at the place you have been sending your resume every several months – don’t ask him out to lunch to “catch up” and immediately blurt out that you need a job at his company.  This is not appropriate and it can’t end well.


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