I am a graphic designer who was recently laid off last month, along with all my other coworkers and bosses at a small regional newspaper. The publisher just decided to close it, but it came as a shock to almost all of us. I was one of their more recent employees, as I had only been there a little over three years.
One of my coworkers mentioned to me that her neighbor, who she periodically sees, works at a university where I am interested in working in their Marketing and Communications department. She gave me her name and email and asked the neighbor if it would be OK for me to contact her about her job and perhaps to give me some tips to get my foot in the door. My coworker messaged me back, saying that her neighbor would be happy to talk to me.
So, I emailed her last week. As I introduced myself, I referenced that it was my coworker who mentioned to me about her willingness to talk to me, and I also mentioned that we were all laid off. I have no way of knowing if the neighbor knew that, but I thought I should mention it by way of introducing myself that I had recently worked at this newspaper and now I and all of my coworkers and bosses are not.
I asked her two questions about her role at the university and what sorts of projects she and her department worked on, and I also mentioned that my coworker thought she might have some tips for me as to how to get my foot in the door.
I tried to make my email as neutral and as non-threatening as possible, but I have heard only radio silence since. I am guessing that with the corona virus restrictions we have, she may be very busy with her own altered work situation, or it could be something else.
Coming off inadvertently as a desperate job seeker was absolutely not my intention. I am wondering what next steps I should take. Should I mention to my coworker that she hasn't answered? I obviously don't want to be a pest, either to my coworker or to her neighbor. Or should I just forget it and concentrate on finding someone else at the university I can talk with?