A friend of mine brought me the following problem. What would you recommend that she do?
I’ve known Mooch (name changed) for many years. He has implied that he helped meget work at two clients. In both cases I have strong evidence that others helped me get in, but no direct evidence of Mooch’s help. Because he is not clearly stated that he helped, I tend to discount the possibility.
I like this man. He is smart and cheerful. He also has unusual family obligations which must create great pressure for him.
As a networker, I have stayed in touch with him over the years, checking up on how he is doing, without any sales motive in mind. Several times he has been out of work and called me for help. Those are the only times I remember him ever calling me. He is good at what he does, and I have recommended him to several people who interviewed him. When I have not been in a position to help, he wheedles, asking me for more introductions repeatedly, if indirectly.
I once said to him that I, too, would like some introductions to potential clients from among the many people he knows. Nothing was forthcoming, until the last time he came to me for help, when he offered to give me an introduction to a client that I did not think was likely to hire my firm, it was so small. Then he asked for help finding a job. I explained to him there was no quid pro quo for my help, just to keep in mind when he was talking with people might benefit from my services. I then tried to introduce him to someone, who declined for reasons unrelated to Mooch. He didn’t seem to understand my explanation.
I did not hear back from Mooch for several months. He left me a message yesterday. I know he is still looking for work and I know what he wants. What should I do?
(This is another of a series of Rainmaking Problems. If you have one that you would like other readers to comment, please send it to me at fharding@HardingCo.com.)