As a job seeker, you must have the proper guidance of how to ask someone to be a reference for your potential job search. You simply cannot select someone at random to write a reference letter who knows nothing about you or is uninterested in your request. When it comes to getting a job, you should be careful with your actions. Otherwise, one mistake can steer you away from your dream job.
Therefore, you must choose your potential reference wisely. Here are some points you should look out for to enhance your approach to asking someone to be your reference.
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Do you need to ask someone to be a reference?
If your job application requires you to provide two or three references, you definitely need to ask people from your profession to be references. Employers, to satisfy their queries regarding a job candidate’s skills, experience, personality, and behavior in the previous workplace, should seek the names of some of your references. In this case, you cannot deny them; otherwise, they will form a negative opinion of you, and your application will be incomplete.
Whom and how should I contact for references?
Deciding who to ask for a reference is a challenge for many individuals. In a professional setting, a job applicant’s former or present employer, manager, and coworkers are the legal entities that have closely observed your work and may describe your skills, work habits, relationships with others, and method of handling clients or projects. They can serve as your referee and are the finest judges of your professional life. The professors, coaches, or mentors at your university can act as references if this is your first job application and you are a recent graduate. They can provide details about your capacity for learning. These are the individuals that will inform the employer about your skills and abilities and assist them in determining whether or not you are a good fit for the company.
As a result, list your references’ names in sequential numbers and get in touch with them, either with a text or formal email message. If you are rejected, try to gather a list of 10–15 references. Go ahead and call them if you believe they are close enough for a phone call. Ask for references as soon as you can and begin your search.
How to ask someone to be a reference?
As you list the names of your references, follow the steps outlined below to properly ask someone to be your reference.
1) Come in as quickly as you can
You should approach your references as soon as possible. It might be challenging for people to find time for you since they have hectic schedules. As a result, you should try to find a time when they are available to talk further. Another thing is that every job application has a time limit, and you can’t take longer to only get your references because there are many competitors applying for the same job.
2) Allow them some time to decide
Try not to press them into choosing to serve as your reference. Ensure that they feel at ease with your request for assistance. After you ask them a question, give them some time to respond. If you press them too hard, they could feel burdened and become irritated.
3) Express your gratitude
You must express your thanks to people regardless of whether they agree or decline to serve as references. By gently thanking them for their time and attention, you may express your gratitude. Being modest is a virtue for a person. Keep in mind that you are asking for this favor only for yourself and that future help may be able to come your way if you behave well.
4) Requesting consent
Leave space for your references to deny or agree. If you see any hesitation in their response, ask them directly whether they are willing or not. When the answer is no, thank them politely and move on to the next one. And there’s nothing to get angry or anxious about. You can’t force them to accept your request because it’s their own choice. However, choose those who will speak highly of you and be enthusiastic to become your references.
5) Fill out all of the details if they are willing
Sort out the list of references into a fresh one with people who are willing to be potential references. After that, fill in your references with the necessary information. Give them a description of your new job application and explain why you want it. Explain to them that your skills and experiences are preferable for the job and the company too. Provide them with important details they may want to know so they can write the reference letter. Prepare a list of questions that the employer might ask and answers that the reference can provide neatly ahead of time.
6) Give your resume to them to make it easy
When you are sending details, also attach your resume to make it easier for the references to understand your points. They can read it and frame their response in the reference letter. Be available to them in case they have any questions.
7) Rewrite their contact information
Inquire with the references about their current contact information, including phone and email address. Note down their names, current designations, and organizations to fill in the application form. To avoid miscommunication between your reference and employer, make sure your information is correct.
8) Provide more references
Even though the employer asks for 2 or 3 references, you should give 5–6 references just in case they back out due to probable situations. More references can provide you with more options for how to proceed.
9) Give Updates to your references
If you are asking someone to be your reference, it’s considerate of you to let them know about your job update. They could be worried as they have agreed to help you even with their busy schedule. You must tell them whether you got the job or not; otherwise, they will get the wrong idea that you are not concerned about them.
10) Write a thank-you message afterward
The person who has helped you by becoming your response definitely deserves a thank-you response from you after you get the job. You can respond to their assistance with a formal email. So they will feel your sincerity towards their effort.