If you’ve been having difficulty gaining access to your referrals, ask your contact to introduce you. You might ask, “Do you have any idea how hard it is to get an appointment with someone like Sara?” Fred might react by saying, “I’m sure it may be very difficult. I’ll call her.” Fred’s call increases your chances of getting a meeting with her. If Fred is willing to make an introductory call for you, find out whether you’re to call him back or wait for him to call you.
The purposes of trying to get your contact to make the referral are the following:
It makes it more likely that you’ll get a meeting. In asking Sara to meet with you, Fred has to justify a reason for the favor, a form of pre selling. He might say something like, “I’d appreciate the favor. Mary is quite an impressive person.” This may not help much, but it doesn’t hurt.
Sometimes your contact may make one or two calls for you while you’re in his office. Another thing he or she may do is write several letters of introduction to the referrals. Make the most of every opportunity to meet with a key person. You never know which ones are going to pay off. Jack Freeman was offered a meeting with Frank Logan of Mercury Systems, which was several hours’ drive away. Jack made the trip nevertheless. It seemed to have been a waste of time. Six weeks later, Jack got called for an interview with Ted Harris of Acme Software in another state, and this interview led to an excellent offer. Ted told Jack that he had learned of him through a good recommendation from Frank. Sometimes job hunters get a good lead from someone they thought they had struck