Introduce yourself, explain why you are contacting them and set up a chat.
Tips for Outreach
In today’s world it’s incredibly easy to fire off a brief email from your iphone. When reaching out to Professionals you need to decide if you can write a professional looking email with just your thumbs. More often than not, first contact emails need to be planned and well thought out.
Start your email with a proper salutation with consideration for your relationship to the person and his/her level of experience. Never use “Hey.”
- For most emails to faculty, staff, alumni or speakers, we recommend “Dear Mr./Mrs./Professor, XXXX,” as the salutation.
- For a close personal contact you are emailing or for a recent Bowdoin graduate (1-3 years out), we recommend “Dear John” as the salutation. Doing so maintains a professional yet familiar tone.
- “I found your name listed in the Bowdoin Career Advisory Network on LinkedIn as a Bowdoin alumnus working at FIRM NAME. I am currently a sophomore at Bowdoin exploring a career in FIELD NAME.”
- “I am currently a sophomore at Bowdoin and a member of the track team. One of my teammates, Sam Stevenson, recommended I contact you as I have a growing interest in FIELD NAME.”
- “I am a current junior at Bowdoin College and attended your COMPANY info session on campus last week. I would love to hear more about your career path and any advice you have for someone interested in FIELD NAME.”
Create a personal connection. Make your purpose clear early on in the email. Remember: people want to read emails quickly, so keep your sentences short and clear. You’ll also need to pay careful attention to grammar, spelling, and punctuation so that you present a professional image of yourself and your organization.
Before you end your email, it’s polite to thank your reader one more time and add some polite closing remarks.
- “Thank you for your patience and cooperation”
- “Thank you for your consideration”
and then follow up with, “If you have any questions or concerns, don’t hesitate to let me know” and “I look forward to hearing from you”.
The last step is to include an appropriate closing with your name.
- “Best regards”
- “Thank you”
Avoid closings such as “Best wishes” or “Cheers” unless you are good friends with the reader.
Finally, before you hit the send button, review and spell check your email one more time to make sure it’s truly perfect!
These are solid examples you may adapt in your email or call to a networking contact.
You’re in Charge
This is your chance to learn what you can in the time you have. Here are some tips.
Have your resume on hand and come prepared with a few questions you cannot answer by looking at the company website. This will ensure you come across as informed and prepared.