How to Reach Out to Colleagues Professionally

ReachingOutColleagueA large part of being a freelancer and/or entrepreneur is reaching out to others in your industry; your colleagues. You may feel that you can add value to the brand or business of a colleague. You may also feel that your business or brand would benefit from partnering with your colleague. So you may immediately decide to send an email; reaching out, as it were. If you’re interested in partnering with a colleague, here are a few rules to ensure your message doesn’t fall on deaf ears:

  • Seek to give and not just get. I get a ton of emails every week of people basically saying “Hire Me”, “Hire Me”; however, most don’t share what immediate value they can offer to my company. When a person takes the initiative to research my company and can speak to how they’d add value right away; I’m typically interested. If they are only looking for a paycheck or to supplement their income, I’m typically not interested. Many will say in their message to me, that they are looking to make a bit more money and to let them know if I could use help. Well let’s flip the script. An entrepreneur is typically swamped and can always use help. You should reach out and let the entrepreneur know how you can add value, what your rate of pay would be and have recent references in tow to back up your claims. This will typically get the attention of a colleague in need.
  • Check and double check your message for grammar, spelling and syntax. You’ll want to be sure that if you’re offering to partner with someone, you come off as having at least a measure of intelligence. If your email is full of slang, grammatical, errors and typos, you will probably not get the response you want. We’re all guilty of making a typo here or there. We may be typing to fast out of excitement or perhaps our keyboard is faulty and a button or two has popped off; all the more reason to double check your message before reaching out.

There are of course other items you should consider, before reaching out to a colleague in a professional manner. However, if you follow the tips above you will be viewed as help and not a hindrance in the day of your colleague.

This is Shilonda Downing, signing out for Virtual Work Team LLC.


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