There are many situations or scenarios where one needs to present a referral letter. Samples of such letters are freely available in many books and also on websites, in spite of which many of us find it quite difficult to write one.
Referral letters are often confused with introductory letters, reference letters, and recommendation letters. This term is, however, a generic one and can be used for any letter that makes an attempt to cite a reference. It can be a formal or informal letter, referring to a person or a product. In fact, it can also be about subjects like animals or pets. A friend of mine who is a vet often receives such letters about animals, which goes as follows:
“… Ellie is a military trained dog, who has been honorably discharged from military duty on medical grounds. We hope that her special training can be used for a good cause, and she becomes a joyous companion …. P.S.: She loves jam and jelly ….”
Basically, it can be written by anyone to any person referring or recommending anything under the sun. Other types of letters such as introductory letters and reference letters have a more specific purpose and are more formal in nature. In case of referral letters, there is a tinge of informal language. You will observe that these letters are written more in case of domestic scenarios instead of business recommendations. However, it is still necessary to maintain a decent language with a simple flow and a polite tone. Another fact that any person should know is that writing this letter from the bottom of the heart can have a lasting effect on the reader.
Though, this letter is quite easy to write, there is a specific format that should be maintained. Since the tone is usually informal, you will have to write only a short addressing and salutation that goes as “to whomsoever it may concern.” Some people also prefer to write the date on the right hand side of the page along with the salutation.
The next part is the introduction, where the reference of the person or subject can be described. In the second paragraph, the person or subject’s qualities can be described in detail. The third paragraph can contain the importance of those qualities.
The example provided below was written to provide the reference of my friend, who is very fond of plants and works as a gardener during the summer vacations.
|To whomsoever it may concern,
It is often said that any person working in the garden, must love plants from the bottom of the heart. Stacy is my neighbor and friend, who loves plants as if they are her own children and life. Her family has been living next to us for the past 30 years.
People tend to find passion in art, music, and literature. But Stacy, unlike many others, has developed a deep affection for plants and trees. She is not just fond of working in the garden but is also significantly interested in the field of botany. You will be surprised to find that she has a huge volume of knowledge about all sorts of plants that she can put to use to tend your garden. I assure you that after about a month or so, you will be left wondering whether your garden has turned into the garden of Eden.
Stacy’s punctuality, honesty, and sincerity is seen through the work and affection that she imparts on every plant that she happens to come across, which is quite astounding for a 14-year-old. However, I must warn you about one fact, never ever hack down a tree in front of her. Tears will start rolling down her cheeks, quite spontaneously and uncontrollably.
Name and signature
You may modify this letter according to your requirement and can also use it as a template or guideline. The key towards writing a good referral letter is to not only praise the person, but also effectively convince the reader about his or her qualities and skills.