This week’s Seeker Session topic was job search networking. Read on for a recap and great tips from Nicole!
In business, it is often said that success is determined not by what you know but by who you know. The same can be said for job seekers and the success they have in finding a job. For some, networking comes naturally but for others it is an area where significant improvement can be made.
Some Tips to Grow Your Job Search Network:
- Start before you need it. Networking should be a constant, even once you have a job never stop making connections with people and trying to maintain them. You never know when it may be beneficial to you.
- Connect people you do know. Use your network not only to benefit yourself but others as well. Connect your friends and contacts to other people that may benefit each other. For example, a friend of yours is looking to hire but it’s not the right fit for you, tell them about someone you know who is also looking for a job. Someday they might remember to return the favor.
- Always follow up. When making new contacts, make sure to always follow up. A quick email or phone call within 24 hours of meeting someone can lay the foundation for a fruitful relationship. It doesn’t take much effort but it can make a world of difference.
- Take the initiative. Play a very active role in networking. Be the person who starts the conversation. Be quick to introduce yourself. Also, be the first person to offer help when it is required. Developing the habit of initiative will make your networking efforts easier and more natural.
- Always stay in touch. It’s important to stay in contact or people forget who you are. Remember to regularly check in with your contacts with a quick email or phone call. Regular contact will allow the relationship to develop slowly over time.
- Always say thanks. Thank you notes are a quick and easy way to connect with someone. Plus, the actual card serves as a reminder of you every time the other person sees it. Make it personal and handwritten instead of an email when possible.
- Don’t be afraid to ask for what you want. Be direct and ask for what you want. There is no other way to get it. Remember: the answer to every request that you don’t make is no.
- Prepare an elevator speech. In one minute or less you should be able to describe who you are and what you have to offer as an employee.
- Join a job search support group or club. This is a good place to gain information about the job search process and meet likeminded people who are going through the same experiences as you.
- Email friends and family. Ask them to put you in contact with anyone that can help with your job search or may know of a good job for you.
65% of people who are employed in the US found a job that was never publicly advertised. Less than half of all available jobs are ever advertised so it is vital to start build your network.
Next week’s topic is Workplace Basics. We hope to see you there! It’s from 10am to 11am next Wednesday at Goodwill’s Mission Services Center in Rockford.