It can be awkward to contact someone you’ve lost touch with, especially if you’re asking for something. But, reconnecting might be easier than you think and doesn’t need to be a guilt-laden task. Next time you want to touch base with a long-lost colleague or friend about a job, a career switch, or another opportunity, try these three things:
- Acknowledge the lapse. Recognize that time has passed and explain the silence. Try, "I know it’s been ages since we’ve spoken but I’ve thought of you often over the years and have always wanted to reconnect."
- Explain why now. Don’t try to hide your agenda. If you need something — a recommendation or referral — be transparent about your motive for reaching out.
- Offer something in return. Reciprocity goes a long way. Propose a way that you can help out either now or in the future.