How to Request an Introduction

Bernerd Schaefer

When pursuing companies we want to work with it’s helpful to have a warm introduction from a shared personal or professional connection.

Many of us as developers or designers are not accustomed to using our network in this way, and the first few times you do so can feel awkward.

So I want to share a few example emails which can serve as a template for your first few requests.

These are real emails that we’ve sent to people, though we’ve changed the names and companies for privacy.


This email is to a former colleague Amelia who is working at ChirpBook.

How have you been, Amelia?

It’s cool to see that you’re at ChirpBook now; what are you doing for them?

I’m now Development Director for thoughtbot in Portland. Right now we’re a tiny team – just myself doing web development, and Diana an excellent iOS developer.

Anyway, I and some of my colleagues in SF have been hearing good things about ChirpBook, and saw there are some people here in Portland – as well as others in San Francisco.

Would you be able to connect me with some of them? I’d love to grab lunch and talk about technology with them!


This email is to a former client, Lonnie from BigCatFolder, asking for an introduction to Eric from FeelingShoppe.

Hi Lonnie,

I heard about BigCatFolder recently and of course thought about you. Hope you’re doing well.

I recall that you used to work with Eric Cruz, who I saw is now running FeelingShoppe.

thoughtbot has a small team in Portland right now with a great iOS developer and great Go developer. Go is an awesome programming language for high concurrency applications, embedded devices, and Internet of Things (perhaps a good fit for collaborating with FeelingShoppe?).

I’d love to connect Eric with those folks to meet up with someone from FeelingShoppe in Portland to geek out about technology over coffee or lunch sometime.

We’re hoping to build up a team in Portland over the years, based on long-term client relationships like we have with you in Boston.

For more examples, check out this post on refactoring email, which has general tips for structuring your emails.