The other day I got an email from my alma mater – a youngster was looking to come out to DC and wanted advice about looking for a job. Thrilled at the thought of more Midwesterners out here, I said I was happy to help and began corresponding with the student.
After a few days, several emails and a good chunk of my time, I had provided the job seeker with a list of places to job search, people to reach out to and avenues to sharpen her resume and give her an edge in the job market.
Pleased with myself for paying it forward, I silently wished her well and awaited the results.
But nothing came. A week came and went and I didn’t receive so much as a “Great, thanks…”
I was shocked and a little confused. In this day and age, with all the career advice that runs wild – the testimonials, the workshops and the blogs – do people still forget to say thank you?
Let me straighten this out for anyone wondering – thank yous are needed. They are vital.
Building a career is not about finding a job. It’s about building relationships and growing that support network. The people most likely to help you in the future are ones who have helped you in the past, provided you maintained a proper relationship and treated them with respect.
Now, I came to find out this girl did get a job and was well on her way to a bright career. Good. She still needs to send a thank you. Whether she used my help or not.
If you ask for advice and someone gives it to you, thank them.
Not only is it smart and better for your career – it’s common courtesy.
Laurel Buckley is an AFF ambassador.