The purpose of this post is to show you how to get anyone in your company to respond to your email. I have had success using the techniques below while interning at PepsiCo.
Disclaimer: The techniques mentioned in this blog post were derived from The Competitive Edge podcast Episode 30.
Before the Email
It is possible to reach ANYONE in your company by phone for a short conversation. If you are not afraid of rejection, you can get in touch with anyone through cold emailing.
How to Find an Email
If your company uses Microsoft Office, you have access to all employees’ email in your company. Steps to get an email are shown in the pictures below
Articulating the Email
Below is an email I sent to a Senior Vice President at PepsiCo (the equivalent of the CFO for supply chain) asking for career advice.
Grab their attention. Make a subject line that will draw attention and sum up why you are emailing them.
My example: Following in Your Footsteps
Cut straight to the point; do not waste words on meaningless background facts (hometown, school major, interests etc.). The short introduction is vital; you will capture the person’s attention in the first sentence. Throw something in at the end of the sentence that will make them want to read more.
My Example: I aspire to be as impactful as you have been in PepsiCo and the world.
The second sentence is the most important part of the email. You must connect on an emotional level here. In my email, I brought up an achievement of his which he is extremely proud of while relating it to myself. Referencing something specific shows you have researched the person and are serious about getting time on his/her calendar. When bringing up a topic that connects you and your targeted executive, keep in mind it can be anything that you relate to. Some examples are an article the person wrote, an interview that he/she gave, a position they held, specific accomplishments or even a personal hobby you both share.
My example: Your influence on Gatorade, my favorite drink, to move it to a Kosher beverage is truly amazing especially because half my family keeps Kosher.
Specific Time – 10,3
Put time on their calendar and be specific. It’s harder for someone to say no if you found an open timeslot on their calendar, exemplify that you have a plan and are not going to waste a second with them. A personal rule of mine is to request ten minutes of their time to ask three questions. Ten minutes is short enough where they can be willing to speak to you but long enough where you can get some good information.
My example: I have put time on your calendar to speak with you on Thursday at 10:00 but will only need ten minutes of your time to ask you three questions.
Throwing in a towards the end of your email lightens up the subject matter. Do not use this for every person you email though. You must understand what industry this person is in and if it will be taken in a positive or negative way. If you can find out that the person is easy going definitely throw it in there.
Notice how I had a grammar error because I did not proofread. Always double check your work to avoid a costly mistake.
Anticipate that the executive will initially deny your request to have a phone call. BE PERSISTENT. I sent my email request three days in a row until the executive accepted my meeting with him.
Best of luck and happy interning!