A woman I know was just contacted by a young woman in high school, who happened to be the daughter of a friend of a friend. The girl is interested in pursuing a career in my friend’s field, so the mutual contact suggested that she get in touch to seek out some advice.
The girl emailed my friend a nice note and asked for any suggestions about breaking into the field. Though my friend was very busy, and had never met the girl, she took an hour out of her time to provided thoughtful responses, contacts, and relevant links that might be of help.
It’s been a month since my friend sent that email, and she has yet to receive so much as a thank you, either from the girl, her parents, or the mutual acquaintance who put them in touch. Here is someone whose advice had been sought out and, indeed, could prove to be a valuable contact or reference as the girl moves into that field, and yet she hasn’t even been thanked for her time or feedback. I know high schoolers may not be the most conscientious people when it comes to good etiquette, but this seems like a big blunder. At the very least, the girls’ parents should have nudged her to respond to the email my friend took the time to write.
Sometimes I get frustrated when I spend a lot of time on a project and only get a mere “thank you”—or worse, “TY”—response via email. But to not even get that when you are trying to make connections within your industry and someone has done you a considerable favor seems completely unacceptable to me. If you want to succeed, start by practicing good manners!