How to Ask for Advice Over Email

Photo by Brendan Rankin

“Can we buy we a coffee and collect your brain?” What caused this misinterpretation among a advice-needing people of a universe that a going rate for an hour-long veteran conference is a three-dollar beverage? Why do we all try this early in a careers (and if we work in biz dev, a center and late careers)?

I consider it’s that in a early twenties, many of us haven’t satisfied how general we seem to everybody we demeanour adult to, nor how most busier those people are. We see an sparkling new loyalty and they see some new shit to do or, ideally, avoid.

So if we find yourself seeking to collect someone’s mind (a bad phrase), initial ask yourself if we unequivocally wish their recommendation or only their approval. If it’s a latter, go speak to your friends instead, or do something considerable in public.


If we unequivocally wish advice, just ask it in a email. And follow these rules:

  • Spend 95% of your time researching a chairman you’re emailing, and 5% essay a email.
  • Introduce yourself fast though specifically, and ask specific questions.
  • Ask one or dual questions. Not three! You’ll feel like adding a third since your email looks too short. It’s not.
  • Google your questions first.
  • Don’t offer to “hop on a phone” as a compromise. That’s not a compromise, it’s a threat.
  • Say “Even one judgment would be great.”
  • Novelist Tao Lin came adult with this one: Tell a target it’s OK to omit your email. Not only to contend no, though to completely omit it.
  • Say appreciate you.
  • As shortly as you’re prepared to send, find and undo during slightest one sentence.
  • Send and pierce on. Never “follow up.”

The whole indicate is to make a response feel reduction like work and some-more like procrastination. If we ask me out to coffee in your initial email, we will feign possibly an out-of-office respond or my death. If we email me one open doubt and supplement “Feel giveaway to ignore,” afterwards we will immediately omit my tangible pursuit and write we a book over Gmail.

Send and pierce on. Be agreeably astounded if we hear anything back. Then follow these rules:


  • Say appreciate we again.
  • If a answer is truly glorious and engaged, feel giveaway to ask a followup question, with a same caveats as before.
  • Only ever ask to accommodate in chairman after they’ve created we during slightest 5 paragraphs or 5 exclamation marks.
  • Never speak on a phone again.

Every ask for recommendation assumes that a recipient’s mind is some-more valuable, for a moment, than yours. So to get your answers, provide them like that’s true.

Short URL:

Posted by on Jun 15 2017. Filed under Gadgets. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

Leave a Reply

Photo Gallery

Log in | Designed by hitechnews