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Months ago, in March, my recommender told me that she would look over my application essays and give any recommendations I need. I sent her my application essays in early August and told her that I wanted my apps in by November 1st, so that gave her months to prepare. Something came up, so the due date changed to October 15th. September 30th I sent her an email telling her so. No response... Two days ago I called her office and left a message. Still no response... There are only 5 days left until I want to turn in my applications and I still have heard nothing from her confirming or denying the fact that she can get it finished by then. She hasn't even accessed my online recommendations. Usually she responds quickly to emails, but not this time. In your opinion, where is the line between "giving a reminder" and "being pushy"? What would you guys do? I'm stressing out here...
If you work in the same office. Conviently bump into her, don't barge into her office but if you know she has to be somewhere at a specific time be in the general area. Face to face she can't hide. Just be tactful in your approach. Don't just confront her with, have you done my recommendation. Lead with how you appreciate her offering to do this, and you know it must have been a time commitment for her. Then say well at least its almost over and you wont have to worry about those recs anymore. Thats gonna give her a fair amount of guilt that hopefully will get her working.
Be prepared for the oh god I forgot about that, whens it due again? comment.
Well, we are in different countries now and it is almost impossible to get her on the phone because she is so busy all the time. The only way to contact her is by email or leaving messages, so I run the risk of "nagging" because she isn't replying.
I had a similar problem, eric19831108. It was a supervisor from a previous job and like you I had approached her this past spring about a recommendation. And also like you I gave her my "reommendation packet" a couple of months ago. And, like in your situation, she completely forgot (and lost the packet) and took forever to return e-mails.
However, I was lucky in that I had another former supervisor from the same organization who was retired (i.e. a lot of free time) who I still felt close enough to that I could explain the situation and he did a last minute (but excellent) reco. for me. Of course I was kicking myself that I didn't ask him in the first place since I knew that he would write a stellar reco., but since he had retired and the other supervisor had risen up quite high in management in the organization, I guess I just had job title stars in my eyes.
So, I guess what I'm trying to say is that most likely she probably hasn't even started on your reco. yet, and if she is as busy as you say she is, probably won't have time to write a very good one, if she has time to do it at all. Is there anyone else that you feel comfortable enough with where you could suck it up and explain the situation and they wouldn't be horribly offended that they are a last minute reco. choice?