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Asking for a reference [solved]

ReznikReznik Registered User regular
edited March 2011 in Help / Advice Forum
I need 2 references for this government job I am applying for. One of the people I want to ask was my boss from a job in the summer of '09. I don't know why I didn't ask at the time. I haven't had any communication with him since the contract ended (though he was interested in hiring me for another contract, but I had other commitments and couldn't). I have his e-mail and his office phone number.

Basically, what is the best and most polite way to ask? This is probably a simple answer but a) I am bad at this and b) I haven't talked to the guy in like a year and a half so I don't know how to ask and also make sure he remembers who I am in a way that doesn't sound stupid.

edit: and I'm looking so far back because my other boss from the college job I worked literally had 0 interaction with me. He would probably not be a good reference.

Do... Re.... Mi... Ti... La...
Do... Re... Mi... So... Fa.... Do... Re.... Do...
Forget it...
Reznik on


  • RikushixRikushix VancouverRegistered User regular
    edited March 2011
    It doesn't have to be as polite and formal as a cover letter, but depending on how your style of communication was with your boss, just be straightforward. Send a clear, concise email asking if he could write you a reference. Thank him for his time in advance. It needn't be more than a few sentences.

    Rikushix on
  • Eat it You Nasty Pig.Eat it You Nasty Pig. tell homeland security 'we are the bomb'Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Just email/call him and say "hey john I know it's been a couple years, but I'm putting together an application for whatever and I was wondering if you'd mind being my reference for whereveryouworkedbackthenCorp?"

    Eat it You Nasty Pig. on
    it was the smallest on the list but
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  • ATIRageATIRage Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Bosses know that their employees may need recommendations for future jobs. What you are asking for isn't that much from a boss. Essentially the government may or may not call your former boss and say "hey, anything up this guy?" And your boss will have a 3-5 minute conversation saying you did great and were an excellent worker. For something like that just call your former boss, or just drop him an email and ask him like this:

    "Hello X, how are things going? [If you have somethings to talk about from the past that can help your boss refresh his memory about you, write that here]. I am applying for a Z job in the government and I was wondering if I could use you as a reference.

    Thanks very much X


    Edit: Also have you thought about asking a professor from college? Most professors love doing this stuff.

    ATIRage on
  • mcpmcp Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    I'm in the process of hunting down references. Here was my email to someone that just agreed to be a reference for me:
    Hello, [Name] !

    This is [Me] from [company we worked together at]. How are things in [City he now lives in] ?

    I'm currently in the process of exploring new opportunities in my career, and I was curious if I could hit you up for a reference?

    Talk to you later!
    He said yes and gave me his contact information. I thanked him. Done and done.

    mcp on
  • ReznikReznik Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Thanks for the help guys. I got my reference. *thumbs up*

    Reznik on
    Do... Re.... Mi... Ti... La...
    Do... Re... Mi... So... Fa.... Do... Re.... Do...
    Forget it...
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