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July 6, 2020
192: How to reach out for advice

As educators in the design field, we both get daily requests from people asking for career advice, feedback on a portfolio or mentorship around existing issues in their work. Lately, we’ve noticed an increase in people reaching out cold. While this is certainly flattering, figuring out how best to help someone we’re hearing from for the very first time is also very time consuming. Often we take the time to reply and then hear nothing back from that person ever again, which can be very discouraging. In this episode we discuss different ways to ask for advice and how to reach out to people kindly.

key takeaways

Approach asking for advice in the same way you would approach building your network. Work on building your network and relationships with other designers in a genuine way. Be realistic. You can’t rely on a person on the internet for urgent queries and questions. Find a mentor and build that connection with someone IRL who can help with pressing matters.

Before you reach out, consider what kind of contact you’ve had with this person to date. How long have you followed them for, have you supported their content by liking, sharing or commenting recently or in the past? Don’t expect the person you reach out to, to read a novel and don’t expect them to do all the work for you. Show you have tried to find a solution to your problem and why their expertise in particular is what you need.

When you reach out, make it clear that it is mutually beneficial for both of you. This is much easier after you’ve had micro interactions with the person online and you’ve built up a relationship, even just as internet acquaintances.

show timestamps

01.30 – Catch up/Inside Marketing Design
05.04 – A design industry problem
15.11 – How to reach out
19.59 – Examples of successful outreach
22.48 –Remember we’re all human

show links