Post # 1
front story is I got married last summer and am graduating from nursing school in afew weeks…my huband is working like crazy to support us both and his mother, and all I want is to find a good job as soon as posible after graduation, but I need letters of recommendation to do so.
I feel ike I”m doing something wrong…I have maintained friendly relationships with all my former employers, friends on facebook, and I’m confident in my past work performances… etc.
One of my former managers (when I was in real estate) invited herself to my wedding and shower last summer…(and I decided to go ahead and invite her) and then didn’t show up for either….but couldn’t stop gushing over the phone how happy she was for me and how much she’d love for me to come work for her again but how much she supports what I’m doing (I’m in school, headed into another field of work)….she’s always been very seemingly supportive and happy for me…from a distance at least. I did’nt hold it against her that I saved her a seat at my wedding…paid for her meal that she din’t show up for…..however when months later I emailed her, and very politley asked if she would write me a letter of recommendation, she agreed but then never followed through..=(
I have had half a mind to delete her from my life…but seems childish, and I hate burning bridges but she’s been working on the bridge from her end.
Then I went back to work temporarily for someone else I worked for a long time ago. He’s a restaurant maanger and I worked with him for 3 years when I was just getting out on my own as a young adult…and so I went back to work for him for the lat 5 months as a waitress to help me get through my last months of college…then gave my notice as planned and was sure to send him a great thank you message for giving me the temporary job…and he responded how he wished he could find more people like me to work for him permanently and how much he was glad to help.
Well, I send him a nice message last saturday (after he notifed me my last paycheck was in the mail) if he could pretty please with cherries on top….write me a letter of recommendation.
What am I doing wrong…wwhy will no one be bothered = ( Should I just take the lack of follow through/response as a “no, I wont”…and move on, or what. I have others I can ask, but I will be pretty upset if all I keep hearing is crickets.
Post # 3
@fresitachulita: I am not sure about the second situation, but for the first one, follow up with her until she writes it. She agreed to do it, I am sure she doesn’t mind but she is likely busy and has probably forgotten. There is no harm in a follow up email just to remind her that you would still really like that letter she agreed to write for you. I have to write references often as part of my job, but when a letter doesn’t have a firm deadline for when it’s needed it is something that can get back burnered. Not because I don’t want to write it but because I am busy!
Post # 4
I don’t know that you need letters of recommendation to get jobs in nursing. Employers usually want to speak to references on the phone, or sometimes get an email from them, but rarely want letters. The exception is academia. I would look for some jobs first and see if any require letters.
The best way to ask for a recommendation is face-to-face, but email sometimes is the only way if you live far. But if email isn’t working, do you have phone numbers for these people? Call them. And then you may have to call again to remind them.
Post # 5
I had the same issue. One former employeer was quick to send me the letter while one said he would and never did. I followed up with him, and eventually just told him I’d write the letter and let him sign it (which is what happened).
I’d follow up with the first ex-employer because maybe she forgot. As for the second, depending on how well you know him and if you think he’d mind maybe ping him again.
Post # 6
@fresitachulita: asking for letters can be so awkward, but i have found you sort of have to bug people! as someone who is written a few letters i can tell you that if the person agrees, they won’t be upset if you have to remind them repeatedly about it. in case you haven’t done it, i’d follow up your requests with both people and ask again, being sure to provide them with your role in working for the them, how long you worked with them, your current resume and a description of what the letter is for. keep the tone super positive, so they will go into writing your letter with an equally positive attitude. don’t give up on the first try! example:
“i would really appreciate it if you could write me a strong letter of recommendation as i am starting an exciting new chapter in my life and seeking a nursing job at XXX. since i worked for you for 3 years as a xxx at xxx i feel you are the best person to ask as you can speak about my organizational skills and work ethic (or some other positive qualities about yourself that they can write about). i truly value the time you put in to this and i do need the letter it by DATE. you can send it to me via email if that’s most convenient. please let me know if you need anything else to help you write this recommendation letter.”
Post # 7
Do you need a letter?
I just ask people to be my references (work, personal, and acedemic), put their contact info on a seperate sheet of paper (to give to possible employer if requested) and when I was looking, I told them all to watch out for phone calls.
I asked each person professionally and in person. I asked them what their contact preferences were, and if I trusted them enough, I asked them to review my resume.
If someone asked me pretty please with cherries on top to write a letter of reccomendation for them, I would turn it down because
a. they weren’t professional enough to ask me with respect
b. I don’t tolerate begging. It is like the one thing in the world that makes me irrationally upset and angry.
Not to sound mean or harsh, but you need to be more professionally confident.
Like, why would you ask your flakey boss?
Ask a coworker to back you up if needed – it’s probably a better idea anyway, since they worked with you directly.
If you need the letters, start getting on people’s cases about them – especially the boss who said she would. Be direct and firm, but don’t ask every single day. Ask what you can do to help speed up the process for them, and always let them know it’s appreciated.
Just don’t say Thank You until you actually have a letter in your hands.
But I would suggest you start looking without the letters – because a real estate agent and a resturant manager aren’t really going to give you an extra boost in the nursing world.
Post # 8
I think it’s more the issue of the effort involved in writing the letter and less about whether she wants to really do it or not. Even for short LinkedIn recommendations, I’ve heard of managers saying things like, “You write it, I’ll post it.” For grad school, I needed letters of recommendations and I practically had to write it for them! It’s not easy writing letters of recommendation IMO and making it actually sincere and believable. As managers/professors/etc., they are swamped with many other more pressing matters (no offense) so it’s easy to see how this was “ignored”.
If you need to pursue this because you absolutely need a letter of recommendation for something, I would consider asking the writer what you can do to make the process easier or what you can do to expedite the process (e.g. give them talking points, examples).
Post # 9
@CakeyP: I took the pretty please to be a euphemism and not what she actually said.
OP, as others said, follow-up with the first. Also, it’s hard, but it’s better to ask in person rather than over the phone for references/letters. It can also be easier to ask first if they will be a reference, later if they will write a letter if you find you need it.
Post # 10
@CakeyP: ps. I didn’t actually say “pretty please with cherries on top”..lol, common now. It was my way of saying that I asked them nicely and most of the people I know who have applied for nursing jobs say that employers have been requesting letters of recommendation left and right, and that if you don’t produce quickly they move on to the next candidate.
Post # 11
@fresitachulita: Awwp, I’m so sorry; I really didn’t mean to come off as rude or anything.
I’ve just had people literally ask me for a favor with a pretty please with cherries on top and it like immediatley makes me not want to help! People really do it!
I am cranky. 😛
I wonder if you could do anything to make the letter writing more appealing?
And how do these potential employers want the letters? Emailed, snail mailed, handed over during your interview? Because that would be good for your potential letter-writers to know… I know typing up an email sounds much more apprealing to me than writing a letter, signing it, and snail mailing it. :/
Like a PP said, it would be good to ask what you can do to make the process easier.
BTW, ask some of your nursing school professors and classmates to write you letters.
A person in nursing should hold more weight than other professions, or at least you’d hope so. Plus, they’d hopefully be more understanding of your need for a letter!
Post # 12
I’m a professor and I get asked to write reccommendations often. Here is what I suggest: First, ask politely (this can be in person or via email, but if you do it in person follow up with an email about what we discussed) and be specific. Be sure to give me the following:
1) What is the letter for? acceptance into a program, scholarship etc? What is the name of the program and where is it located? 2) What date do you need the recc letter by? Give me a deadline. When I get asked to write these I put them off because I have so much going on (and I personally hate writing!) Give me a deadline and I’ll stick to it. I don’t want to jepordize your chances for admission- I want you to succeed, but I need to know when you need it so that I can schedule some time to write you a good letter. 3) Where and to whom do I need to send it? Does it need to be confidentail or not? Is email okay or do they need hard copy? There are so many different ways various programs and places want things done- make it easy for me! 4) Include your CV/resume/background/reasons you want to attend this program etc.. Even though I know you, I have many students and knowing your goals and background that I may not be familiar with can help me tailor my recc letter to your program, giving you a better reccomendation.
OP, I’d re-ask your first source, the one who agreed to write you the recc. She probably got busy and pushed it aside. I hope this helps!
Post # 13
@fresitachulita: I am a manager and it is really annoying to write recommendations letters. I’d rather have someone call me and ask for a reference, or be able to do an easy and brief recommendation on LinkedIn. If you want to make sure I do it, I suggest writing it for me. Seriously. What skills do you want to highlight? What should it say? You write it, I edit it, then I sign it. Otherwise, unless you were a rock star, chances are I’m not doing it.
Post # 14
@CakeyP: +1, if the references are relevant then they are useless. If someone wants to work for me in marcomm and they come with a restaurant reference and something else that has nothing to do with the job, I am not going to hire them.