Professional favors make the business world go round. But while there are some you're more than willing to do, there are others you'd much rather avoid.
Thankfully has the perfect response for, say, when that intern you had a couple years ago (who was great, but there wasn't a position available at the time to hire them) reaches out asking you to introduce them to someone they noticed was in your LinkedIn Network.
Business Insider suggests taking a note from Jocelyn Glei, author of .
If you don't feel comfortable making an introduction, Glei suggests replying:
"Hi Claire—I'd love to help you out, but my relationship with [insert contact's name] is still fairly new, so I don't really feel comfortable making introductions at this juncture."
For the occasions when someone emails you asking you to share a client's email address, Glei suggests replying:
"Hi Dan—I wish I could help you out, but all contact information for our clients is considered proprietary company information. Unfortunately I'm not at liberty to share it with competitors."
Glei says it's okay to dodge these types of requests, because making that connection or giving someone an introduction means you're endorsing them, when you may not necessarily want to.
"If you're not comfortable with leveraging your credibility for someone, or it's not the right moment to do so, it's fine to politely decline the request," she explains.
And as Business Insider points out, Glei writes several times in her book, "Just because someone asked doesn't mean they expect a 'yes'."
You may have liked that intern, but you don't owe them anything; a favor is very different than a duty, and that's fine. Help when you can, but don't feel bad if you don't feel comfortable doing it.