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How to Ask For (and Use) References
Episode 40120th September 2021 • The Work in Sports Podcast - Insider Advice for Sports Careers • Brian Clapp - Work in Sports
00:00:00 00:23:46

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On the WorkInSports Podcast, we pride ourselves on offering career advice to folks looking to break into or move up in, not only the sports industry, but wherever talented workers ply their trade. Our question from Jonathan in Texas is one that definitely applies to everyone finishing up a job or internship application:

“Hey Brian – I'm Jonathan; I am a junior in college who is just starting to apply for internships this year. I’ve been listening to a lot of your advice, partially because my professor talks about your podcast all the time! (He’s right, it’s really informative). But one thing I couldn’t find in your archives was any information on asking for and getting professional references. I’ve started applying for internships and I was asked for references which caught me off guard. I was not prepared – what should I do? And what should be my strategy to handle this in the future?”


This is a great question. People spend so much time updating and reformatting their resumes. They will write countless cover letters and tweak their formulas each time. Those things are extremely important and completely within their control.

Using references, though, is something that requires input from other people who are willing to speak on your behalf or take the time to write you a letter of recommendation. It can also be what puts you over the hump when employers start evaluating their applicants. 

Catch the full episode of the podcast where Brian Clapp, VP of Content and Engaged Learning for WorkInSports, covers:

Why Do References Matter?

Etiquette of the Process