Keeping track of personal references is an important part of any job application process. Whether you’re a recent graduate or an experienced professional, having strong personal references can make a significant difference in your job search. In this post, we’ll provide you with some personal reference tips and samples that can help you build a strong network of references that will help you stand out to potential employers.
Why Personal References Are Important
A personal reference is a professional or personal contact who can speak to your character, skills, and work experience. Employers often ask for personal references as part of the job application process to get a better sense of who you are as a person and how you work with others. Having strong personal references can help you stand out from other job applicants and increase your chances of getting hired.
Who to Ask for Personal References
When asking for personal references, it’s important to choose people who know you well and can speak to your professional abilities. Some good options for personal references include:
- Former managers or supervisors
- Colleagues or coworkers
- Professors or academic advisors
- Mentors or coaches
- Clients or customers
How to Ask for Personal References
When asking for personal references, be sure to approach your potential references in a professional manner. Here are some tips for asking for personal references:
- Choose people who know you well and can speak to your professional abilities.
- Ask for permission before using someone as a reference.
- Provide your potential references with your resume and job description so they know what they’ll be speaking to.
- Follow up with a thank you note or email after the reference has been provided.
How to Use Personal References
Once you have your personal references, it’s important to use them effectively. Here are some tips for using personal references:
- Provide your personal references with the job description and any other relevant information about the position you’re applying for.
- Let your personal references know when you’ve applied for a job and give them an idea of when they might be contacted.
- Follow up with your personal references after they’ve been contacted to thank them for their time and let them know the outcome of the job application.
Personal Reference Samples
Here are some personal reference samples that you can use as a guide when building your own list of personal references:
|John Smith||Former Manager||XYZ Company||(555) email@example.com|
|Jane Doe||Colleague||ABC Corporation||(555) firstname.lastname@example.org|
|Sarah Johnson||Mentor||LMN Inc.||(555) email@example.com|
|Mark Johnson||Family Friend||(555) firstname.lastname@example.org|
|Emily Rodriguez||Volunteer Coordinator||(555) email@example.com|
|David Lee||Community Leader||(555) firstname.lastname@example.org|
Building a strong network of personal references is an important part of any job application process. By following these personal reference tips and using the personal reference samples provided, you’ll be on your way to building a strong network of references that can help you stand out to potential employers.
What should I do if I don’t have any professional references?
If you don’t have any professional references, consider using personal references such as mentors, coaches, or community leaders. You can also consider volunteering or taking on internships to gain professional references.
How many personal references should I provide?
Most employers will ask for three to five personal references. However, you should always check the job description to see if there are any specific requirements for personal references.
Can I use family members as personal references?
While family members can speak to your character, it’s generally not recommended to use them as personal references. Employers are typically looking for references who can speak to your professional abilities and work experience.