How to Ask for a Letter of Recommendation (101 GUIDE)

letter of recommendations

Letters of Recommendation are neither the end nor the beginning of your journey, but rather the means by which you can recreate your future based on your past achievements. Get assistance in asking for LOR to advance your career.

To make any CV look more authentic and meaningful, attaching a few letters of recommendation with it are enough. It is indeed a part of the blessing, an asset to create an impact on hundreds of HR you’ll be facing during interviews.

But is it just meant for the sake of giving a boost to your CV? No, various purposes exist, whether going for any top college admission or you’re looking for a better role, showing your LORs also play a safe role in every aspect.

The trouble piles over the moment you have to ask for it. Well speaking from the lens of a layman, most Indian freshers/job holders out there probably don’t know how to ask for such letters they may deserve or have the right to do so. Also, trouble piles over when you don’t know the exact way to ask for the same from your past supervisor and it isn’t easy as it seems to be achieved either. That is, proper execution is needed here too while you lookout for a letter of recommendation.

And hereby I present you this blog which is all about- HOW TO ASK FOR LETTER OF RECOMMENDATION?

Keep reading to know more.

What is a Letter of Recommendation(LOR)?

To give a basic sense, I would like to define any letter of recommendation as a type of reference letter that is precisely worded with the details about you- the level of performance you delivered along with how compatible you are with the role. In brief, the more you possess those letters of recommendation, the better you evolve as a professional individual.

That is it.

Why do LORs Always Work?

Because human psychology says so, a human tendency to believe another human is based on the proof being served on the table. And one of such obvious proof to incorporate is a written paper of any reference, that might double up the function and chances of taking beyond the next action.

Although it’s not ensured that every time you’ll make it to the top of interview success through such letters, one factor remains eternal. And that is, either they’ll remember you for the great LORs you’ve received and can contact you further for the same reason, or you’ll get the precious opportunity to enter into the final stage of the process. A big deal, isn’t it? You get handy experience that you might never have expected, thanks to LORs again and especially to managers, mentors, or colleagues- the one behind the blending of the different performances you put on in one form.

And third, LORs slightly helps in covering so and so information mentioned below, that is:

What do people have to say about the past solutions that you’ve contributed?

Why would you be a good fit?

What was their first reaction when they talked to them?

How was the experience while working with you?

All of the answers to these questions are closed in LORs and give HR a fair comprehensive study to testify your behaviour and how you can help their company by comparing, analysing, and reaching out to the same people who recommended you.

Hence proved again that LORs always work in most of the interview cases.

When to Ask for a Letter of Recommendations?

Whatever it might be the reason for rush or another issue, no one got the time for you to sit and write a letter of recommendation, especially in the realm where people are proposing a wall between themselves.

But wait, not that overwhelming that you need to overthink, the world is still a unique place to live in. What I mean is when to ask for a letter of recommendation- the timing is an important basis to go for asking a written LOR.

For which I’m here to provide you with the checklists relating to this questionnaire:

  1. Email them instead of texting them right away.
  2. Preview their free days/timings.
  3. Think about it when you used to associate with them.
  4. Make a proper schedule of the suitable time, when to drop the message, etc.
  5. Ask yourself- is LOR a necessity or just a boost to your portfolio.

Then act accordingly. Knowing when to ask is so underrated though being aware of most situations we are in. I hope you emphasize ‘when’ before jumping into ‘how’ through these simplified techniques that anyone can easily cooperate with.

How to Ask for a Letter Of Recommendation?

Now coming to the main point for which my blog is typically set about, that is, how you should ask for a letter of recommendation or what are the probable ways to ask for such letters?

My experience of living in vast industries for more than 25 years tells that it’s okay to make mistakes, but if you don’t learn from it then you’re making the worst mistake ever. Similarly, something near to it you can find in such cases that it is okay to prefer the imperfect way of asking for a letter of recommendation, but not until you know it’s not the usual way anymore.

For that, here I am to solve your A-Z doubts on how to ask for a letter of recommendation from anyone which I further divided into different ways via different modes. Because the platform, where you’re asking for LOR, matters too!

Let’s get started.

Via Email

One proverb is hanging around my mind right now, “East or west sending emails are the best”.

Best in terms of what? So many factors to list down, I’m sure of and you’re as well. From sending cold emails to asking for letters of recommendation, email platforms possess the down-to-earth power of connecting with any professionals.

Now, whom to ask for LOR via email communication? Preferably, any past CEO that you’ve worked with, a manager who prefers communication over emails, or anyone who can be reached out through email on a daily basis. Because that’s where the formal entity lies, that’s where the speciality of email existence lies.

Sharing a few notable ways to ask for LOR through email:

  • Start and End with Salutations: No introduction, a must to do while you prefer asking for LORs through writing on Gmail. Also, it helps in bestowing a warm greeting.
  • Prefer Using the Word ‘Request’: While adding the title line or middle of the starting of the first paragraph, using this word can look a bit weaker in an egoistic sense. But if you leave egoism behind, the perception gets flipped over to become some other sense which is contrary to what we used to think.  As a result, a feeling of clarity about what needs to be done is understood effectively plus it enlightens the reader’s mind with the positive urge to help others.
  • The Over-the-Counter Attack: The reason why it is attractive have the very factor behind emailing, which is, the deadline offer knowingly or unknowingly. Setting due dates, and early alarms is suitable for email writing purposes.

Via LinkedIn

How many of you are using LinkedIn for recommendation purposes as well? If yes, that’s great, I admire the fact that you fast-track the real mechanism of LinkedIn- The Modern CV.

If not, then also no worries but of course, you have to worry about generating leads like recommendations. The recommendation that matters for the well-being of the future. So what next to do? Activate your LinkedIn, give an original shape, provide basic details, and witness its growth daily.

And then let’s come to the revolutionary part of your LinkedIn profile after a few days of surveillance on brand new. To get started with how to bring up LinkedIn recommendation, adhere to these few steps given below: 

  • Never Sound ‘Too’ to Someone: If you need recommendations via LinkedIn, too need, too cocky, personalities always over sink as it depicts the kind of favour you need without proper tonality and communication.
  • Give Them an Option: To encourage them about your motives, they love to see a variety of options to write a LinkedIn recommendation. The phrases ending with “…as per your convenience” “let me know if you…” provide a form of a secure option to prolong the process.
  • Sign off with “Would You Mind to Write a Recommendation’: Show them your courtesy, the respect you preserve for giving their personal space with no oppression of course from your end.
  • Show Them the Context: And they will give you a wholesome recommendation that you pray for. Context on the basis of why you want them to write for you, the kind of recommendation you’re looking for, and your latest plan of taking up the sector of your choice. This overall gives them the basic idea before starting to think about writing your recommendation.
  • Stay Accountable with Professionalism: In a professional world like LinkedIn, people tend to take each other seriously. And words like professionalism is the first and the last word LinkedIn stresses on and so does the people out there without any fail.

Via WhatsApp

WhatsApp has the power to own a business like an influencer owns people. When it comes to business communications and giving briefings, WhatsApp has the same feature to carry forward but a bit in an informal manner.

Asking for LOR via WhatsApp is simple depending on two factors- an emotional connection that you hold with that person, be it your co-worker or mentor, and connectivity nothing else, WhatsApp gives the best service.

  • Get to the Point:…As they might have no time to read a whole big paragraph on such platforms as WhatsApp.
  • Create Urgency: The best perk of using informal apps. A way not to have to penetrate through extra issues while asking for LOR via such platforms.
  • Attach Google Form for Polling Session: An instant feedback should always come in handy by conducting a polling session where you get to ask questions about your performance.
  • Ask for Short Paragraphs: It is high time to understand that no difference lies between the size of paragraphs in a recommendation. Asking for short statements/paragraphs are reliable on such platforms, quickly gets added to your testimonial list.

To Conclude

Do you know the secret recipe beyond asking for a good letter of recommendation? That is to simply expect less and breathe more into the chores of your life. To begin, recommend yourself persistently to start reflecting on your kind of recommendations to be given by others. Know that LORs are not the cause of anyone’s root of success, but a way to half predict your life towards success. Sooner the better.

Work on it and let me know how it helped you in the comments below.

Till then take care of yourself and have great days!

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