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How To Make Product Management Connections On Linkedin

Raise your hand if you dread contacting someone you don’t know to get career help. 🙋‍♀️

“What’s the best way to connect with someone on LinkedIn to set up an informational interview” is one of the most frequently asked questions I hear. 

Check out my tips and templates below to become a networking Ninja. 🙅🏽‍♂️

The best way to connect with someone is via a mutual connection which is where the power of LinkedIn comes in. When you’re looking at the profile of the person you wish to contact, you can quickly see who you might know in common. Let’s say I wanted to contact Reid Hoffman, the founder of LinkedIn. Wow, we actually have seven mutual connections! Using the template below, you could then craft an email to your mutual connection with a request to introduce you. 

How to ask for an introduction to someone you’re mutually connected to:

Here’s a short and specific email template you can use when you would like to ask a mutual connection to introduce you to somone:

Hi {name},

I was looking to get introduced to {person you’re trying to connect with} from {that person’s company} and saw you were connected to them. I’m not sure how well you’re connected to them, but if the relationship is strong, I’d really appreciate an introduction to chat about {topic that you’re interested in].

Please let me know if you feel comfortable doing this and I’ll forward a proper request for the introduction that you can forward to them.

How to follow up after an introduction has been made via a mutual connection:

Once you’ve been introduced, it’s fairly straightforward to contact the person directly to let them know your interest and, more specifically, why you want to speak with them. 

Let’s say you are interested in a better understanding of career opportunities or how product management works at a particular company. Setting up an informational interview with someone on the product management team at your targeted company is a good next step. Once you find someone who looks like they might be able to provide some insight, take the plunge and use the following template to send them a request. 

Hi, {contact name}, I’m so glad {mutual contact name} introduced us! I’m a {job title or aspiring job title} and I’ve been considering making a career change. I’ve been following {company name} for a long time now and am wondering if it might be a good place for me to explore further. Would you be open to having a 15-minute call with me sometime in the next two weeks to discuss product management at {company} and what your experience has been there? 

How to connect with someone stone cold — without having a mutual connection introduce you

This is the moment that strikes fear into most of us… trying to connect with someone who you’ve never met before, with whom you share no mutual connections and that you really don’t know anything about other than that they work at the company you’re interested in.

Don’t worry… I’ve got you! Here are a multitude of different email template you can use to connect with someone, depending on your situation.

Hi, {contact name}, I’m a fellow product manager and have been considering making a career change. I’ve been following {company name} for a long time now and am wondering if it might be a good place for me to explore further. Would you be open to having a 15-minute call with me sometime in the next two weeks to discuss product management at {company} and what your experience has been there? 

Or

Hi, {contact name}, I’m an entrepreneur-turned product manager who’s looking to connect with people who’ve made a similar career change. I see that prior to becoming a product manager, you started your own company. I would love the chance to learn more about your experience as I contemplate whether this career change is something I should continue to pursue. Would you be open to having a 15-minute call with me sometime in the next two weeks to discuss product management at {company} and what your experience has been there? 

Or

Hi, {contact name}, I’m an aspiring product manager with a background in {marketing/project management/your current job title}. I see you made a similar transition yourself. Would you be open to having a 15-minute call with me sometime in the next two weeks to discuss how you went about transitioning to product management at {company}? I’d love to learn how I can better prepare myself based on conversations with people like you who’ve been successful at this.”

Want to follow up on a product manager job application?

Use this email template for when you want to contact the recruiter and/or hiring manager for a role you’ve applied for. Also, be sure not to follow up too soon. I recommend waiting 1-2 weeks before reaching out so that you give the person time to review your application first. 

Hi, {name of contact}. I’ve been interested in working for [company name} for a long time, so when I saw that you were looking for a Product Manager, I applied right away. I haven’t yet heard back on my application so I thought I’d reach out to introduce myself directly because I believe my experience is very relevant to what you’re looking for based on the job description. 

Thanks for connecting and I hope you have a great day!”

When you simply want to build your network and make connections to other product managers — which I highly recommend you do, regardless of where you are in your career!

Use the following simple template:

Hi, {contact name}. My name is {Name} and I’m a {Title/Product Manager/Aspiring Product Manager}. Just looking to connect and share with others in the product management industry at this time. I hope you have a great day! 

Whatever you do, keep the communication short, sweet, and to the point. And if you’re not sure about how to find people to connect to in the first place, you may want to consider joining my next Launch Your PM Career Bootcamp in September. This is one of the many things I teach in the program. You can get on the waitlist now and be one of the first to learn when registration opens up. 

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