How can you promote your friends and colleagues in a positive way? Considering all the talk from Lean In about how women should be more supportive of each other in the office, I thought this was a great question from Reader E:
I am an intern (waiting on bar results) at a small law firm. A branch office of my firm is hiring a new attorney for that office, and my supervisor asked me If I knew anyone who was looking. I suggested my friend A., who submitted a resume. Today I found out that the attorney in the branch office wants to interview A. This attorney also wants to talk to me, “candidly,” about A. I am confident in my friend’s ability, but I know this office has had a friend of a current attorney not work out. What can I say to promote my friend and what topics or traits should I avoid?
I actually think there is some etiquette involved when it comes to promoting friends and colleagues, talking up their accomplishments, and even helping them network. Here are some pointers, but I’m curious to hear what else the readers say:
- When suggesting your friend for a specific job: Ask A (let’s say her name is Allison) for a copy of her resume, and what she thinks her top three selling points are. I would then either a) write a short email attaching the resume, or b) swing by the hiring partner’s office, hand-delivering a copy of the resume, to say basically, “My friend Allison just applied for Position Y, but I wanted to bring you her resume myself. Allison is a good friend from law school; we worked together on law review and she won the moot trial competition. I think she’d be a great addition to the firm. Please let me know if I can answer any other questions.” Note a few things about this: [Read more...]