There are many times when we need something; It can be leave from your boss, an interview at a new company, business advice from an expert, or even a recommendation. It can be daunting to write request emails that will get the recipient to grant your request. In this article, we will show you how to write an email requesting something and actually get a response!
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What is a request email?
As the name suggests, a request email is an email you write, asking for something, whether information, favor, or service. The email can be to ask for help, authorization, advice, support, etc. It can also be an appeal or inquiry. Since it’s a request, the email should be very polite, precise, brief, and specific. The recipient should be able to know what you want by the end of the email.
Preparation for writing a request email
i. Focus on the “you” perspective
When requesting something from the recipient, it can be tempting to sink into talking about yourself. The secret is to make it about the recipient. Tell them how you appreciate what they have been doing. Let them know you are a big fan of their work and how their work has transformed your life before asking for an interview. The “you first” approach will help you get backstage passes, several leaves a year, interviews and recommendation letters with minimal effort. Remember, focus on them!
ii. Sell your benefits
What value are you adding to the recipient so that you should secure an interview? If you ask for a favor, an internship, or just an interview, ensure you have done thorough research on the pain points and how you can provide solutions. Set yourself apart!
iii. Make it impossible to say no
How? Anticipate rejection and come up with a solution to their reasons for saying no. For instance, if you want to be an intern for the best-selling writer, they may say no because they don’t have a budget for your salary. Offer to intern for free. You will be making it impossible to say no.
The structure of a request email is similar to that of an official letter. Keep it formal and respectful to increase the chances of the person doing what you are asking.
i. Subject line
The subject line should state why you are emailing the person. It will determine whether the recipient opens your email or not. Keep it short but precise. For instance, “requesting a recommendation letter.”
ii. Salutation/ email introduction
The salutation should be formal unless you know the recipient personally. If you know the name of the recipient, use it to create a personal feeling. For instance, “hello Josh” is likely to make the recipient open the email than “hello sir.”
The body of a request is very simple to craft. Just remember the acronym rap, which stands for reference, action, and polite close. In reference, let the recipient know why you are writing. For instance, “I am writing to request a recommendation for my internship at [company]. The recipient does not have to read through the whole email to know what you want. Ensure you are using polite language. You can start off with phrases like;
I am writing to request…
With reference to…
I am writing in response to your inquiry…
Under action, clearly state what you want the recipient to do for you. For instance, “please send the documents before evening for compiling.” the action should also be very polite because it’s a request. Remember, you are not entitled to what you are requesting. Also, keep it brief and straight to the point. A long body is likely to discourage the recipient from reading the email.
Finish by thanking the recipient for the time spent reading the email. You can use polite phrases like;
Thanks in advance for your assistance.
Please let me know if you have any questions.
I look forward to hearing from you.
Please let me know when you are available.
iv. Email ending
The email end also creates an impression, so ensure you keep it as professional and precise as the rest of the email. Keep it simple, for instance;
Email do’s and don’ts
• Be precise
Nobody wants to read a novel, especially when you are writing to them, taking up their time and requesting something from them. No need for beating around the bush. Keep it short and precise!
• Limit your email to one request
You may want a thousand things, but don’t confuse the recipient. You will end up burying the most important request or eve getting nothing out of it!
• Use a polite tone and language.
A request email should be very polite, like someone who is asking for something and not demanding. Remember that the recipient owes you nothing. Once you are done writing, try reading it from the recipient’s perspective. Would you grant a request to the writer based on the tone?
• Proofread your email
You don’t want your recipient to be put off by poor grammar or punctuation. Ensure you have proofread your email. You can make sure that your email is clear and free of mistakes by using a writing tool such as Grammarly. This will greatly increase your chances of success when making your request.
• Don’t write anything inappropriate in the email. Remember, emails are not private.
• Don’t forget to proofread. It does not matter if you are in a hurry. Poor grammar is a turn-off.
• Don’t send an email if it can be addressed in person or over the call. People have too many emails every day. They don’t want more!
Are you still having trouble writing an email to ask for something? We got you! Here are some samples you can customize to suit your needs.
Sample 1: Leave request email
Subject line: Request for one week leave
With reference to our meeting in the afternoon, I would like to request a one week leave. I have been following up with the interns, and I am feeling a bit under the weather due to working late.
I have been monitoring my health for 10 days, but there has been no improvement, I would like to take time off to see a doctor and get back on my feet to do a better job. I have ensured that all tasks I cannot handle online will be attended to by [name of colleague] so everything can run smoothly in the department.
I will be awaiting your response. Thanks in advance.
Sample 2: Letter of recommendation request email
Subject: Requesting a recommendation letter
Dear Professor [name]
I am writing to request a recommendation letter as I apply for an internship at [company name.] As you may know, I am graduating end of September and need to have completed my internship.
As my professor, I know that your recommendation will go a long way in helping me secure an internship and maybe even a job in the future. Your recommendation will add a lot of weight to my application.
I await your response. Thank you in advance for the consideration and continued support in my studies.
If this article was helpful, check out some other articles about some specific requests.