How to Get Introduced to Hiring Managers on LinkedIn
The best way to contact a hiring manager via LinkedIn is through a LinkedIn Introduction. These introductions have two parts: a note to the person you’re targeting and a note to whoever’s introducing you to that person.
When using LinkedIn to make your first contact with a hiring manager, never invite a hiring manager to connect with you as your first communication. Many professionals guard their first-degree connections on LinkedIn very carefully. If a stranger comes around looking not only for a job but also for access to their network, they may get defensive.
Restrain yourself from connecting with a hiring manager on LinkedIn until after you’ve met in person and you’ve asked whether it’s okay to connect (unless of course the hiring manager invites you to connect with him first).
You can request a limited number of introductions per month depending on your level of subscription on LinkedIn. To ask for an introduction, follow these steps:
Navigate to the profile of the hiring manager you want to speak to.
Click on the Get Introduced through a Connection link on the right side of the page.
If you have more than one common contact, choose which of your connections you’d like to make the introduction. Then put your note to the target person and the introducer in the two-part form that appears.
Under the Category drop-down menu, choose Job Inquiry.
Include the name of the person introducing you in the Subject line, such as, Friend of Ian Troducer looking to connect about a potential fit.
Before filling out your message to the hiring manager, focus on your message to your first-degree contact first. By asking this person to pass on your introduction, you’re asking her to put her reputation on the line for you, meaning she’s taking on some risk if you monkey things up.
Pay as much attention to your request for an introduction as you do to your message to the hiring manager. When asking a contact for an introduction, make sure to follow these guidelines:
Tell the introducer why you want to talk to the target person. Reassure your contact that you’re not planning to ask the hiring manager for a job. Instead, you’re simply exploring the possibility of a fit between you and the hiring manager’s employer. Say how this introduction will help you with your professional goals.
Specify what the conversation will be about. Share the types of questions you plan to ask. Reassure the introducer that you won’t pester her contact.
Offer to answer additional questions about yourself and your intentions on the phone with the introducer. It helps to throw this option out there, but leave the final decision up to your contact. Don’t start calling her every day to find out whether she’s passed your introduction along. Just one call or reminder e-mail is sufficient.
Show appreciation for the impact this person may have on your career. Be professionally assertive, not casually apologetic. Say something like, I would very much appreciate it if you would . . .