8 Tips For Good Networking In Finding A Job
How many people ever get jobs by just cold calling or answering advertisements? Very few. Depending on where you live, and the posts available, the answer is seldom more than 3%. Does that surprise you? Are you surprised that many people get work through people they know or through Networking? It is no surprise that seeking work through friends and business colleagues and co-workers is the new reality in 2013.
At the core of it all, Networking is all about getting to know people who can help you develop your career prospects. Networking is one of the oldest methods in the world for getting work and finding that job. You do not have to be rich or famous or be some big shot or even the most outgoing person in the world to network effectively. You just have to follow some simple Networking advice. And here are 8 of the best Networking Tips I have. They are 100% real and effective, and have worked for me and lot of other job seekers.
1. First impressions count – whether you are meeting face-to-face or via phone or email, always stay sharp, look sharp, and come across as professional and intelligent. People will judge you as they find you. It’s harsh but true.
2. Don’t ask directly for a job – ask for introductions. Okay, that sounds weird – but think about it. Networking is not a Job Fair. Effective networking means using your contacts properly and building lists of useful names of contacts and people who can direct you towards other useful people. Some of the time you are seeking an introduction to someone. See it as a great opportunity to gather potentially useful contacts and information.
3. Give and take – See Networking as a two-way exchange. There is no such thing as a free lunch. Lots of people overlook this. Sometimes in the journey to find work, as I found, a person I helped along the way - was to one day mention a firm and an opening to me that resulted in my application there being successful. It is a two way street. It's Karma.
4. Do the groundwork – Be methodical and research your contacts before meeting them. Make sure they are good solid leads, not Cul de sacs or dead ends, or out of date information. And follow up good leads. Use the web to follow up information and get more details about companies that interest you. A true-ism in having good friends who count is that we sometimes call upon a friend we haven't met or spoke to in ages, so they can be useful for helping to find work. We just might not value them as friends that way. Have a meet and greet with them, just to catch up on old times, before asking them for help. Sometimes these kinds of friends can prove to be valuable and more important friends than we realize. Networking is a subtle art, but can be so rewarding later on.
5. Think laterally – I know it can be hard to do but try to expand your network outwards. Go beyond your comfort zone or your usual sphere of operation. Some people find they cannot do this for whatever reason. Ask yourself what that reason is and then change it. Try seeing it as trying to date the person you most want to meet. You don’t get results one way, so you try something different. You think laterally. With Networking, it’s pretty much the same thing. Remember that you need the job. And if you need to, explain this to your friends and colleagues. They will understand and sympathize.
6. Patience is a virtue – The Networking step is a big step for most people. Commit yourself. You are in it for the long haul. Do not expect to land that amazing dream job at your first meeting. You are building steps forward. It might take some time. Some leads from those you know might not pay off, but some will. Some will probably lead to new career ideas or possibilities. You will have to try several or possibly many times. Those tries may seem small ones, but you always move forward. Fortune favors the prepared mind.
And remember to Add LinkedIn...
7. Build a database – Keep records of who you meet and the many conversations you have had or will have. There’s no point in having a network of contacts that you forget or mislay. That’s utterly unforgivable. We all have mobile phones nowadays and they provide great apps for remembering addresses and useful contacts. Blackberry, iPhone, Android, Nokia - they all count in large amounts. So too does that PC tablet PCor laptop.
8. Go online – You have done that already by reading this. So go further. See the internet as a vast and limitless tool that has made networking a viable option for everyone and there are many forums and business networking sites and they enable business people to share and discuss their views and knowledge. So capitalize on this. Use all the tools at your disposal. And you will succeed.
Oh, I have one more tip for you. JOIN LINKED IN! LinkedIn is a social networking platform, a sort of Facebook for business people or students. Basically there are a lot of people on LinkedIn offering work in hundreds of areas. I could not possibly mention them all. But you should join up, as it is free. Join groups related to your niche or work area and network network network! Even Recruitment companies are resorting to looking up candidates on LinkedIn in the profile areas of members.
This author has used these tips in finding employment. The last two full-time jobs I got were achieved through Networking. Career Networking is not so much an art as a habit. It's a good habit to have. You should file Job Networking with your list of those job skills required to get that ideal job. Practice and enhance this skill.
Finally, even if you look around and still experience difficulties - given the financial way the world is now, look at it another way. Even in times like this, businesses still need good staff with specific skills and experience. And you are the person to fill that role. Use that opportunity. Ensure your skills and qualifications are visible. Make yourself stand out in the job seeking crowd. Networking is a vital step in getting work and by following the steps I have outlined in these Hubs, you can find that job, earn that good salary, and start building that future for yourself. (Updated August 2013)
Copyright 2010 to 2013 (c) Cassy Mantis / Cheeky Girl. All rights reserved.
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