Keeping connected in an Uncertain Job Market
In an Uncertain Job market
Everyone is saying that you need to network to find a job, but if you hate networking, how do you do it! Few people get jobs by just e-mailing resumes, especially in this tough times. Most likely you will find that "next job" though someone you know.
This might sounds like you have to use people to achieve selfish goals, or pathetically ask for help, or like that "needy person" you don't want to portrait yourself being. The truth is, that is not the case. NETWORKING can be done honestly and truthfully, and it can help other people as much as it helps you. NETWORKING, is also called - "this deliberate process of making connections for mutual benefits". When asking for help, request specific information or advice rather then leads for jobs, and both parties will feel more comfortable that way.
If you came to realization that NETWORKING is something you should have done all along, when you find yourself out of a job you might think that is to late to start building your Network! Is that too late? not really. There is no "statue of limitation on networking"
Start making a list of all the people you knew all along, even if you didn't stay in touch with some for a long time, former co-workers, other contacts can range from high school friends to parents of your children's soccer teammates. Then extend to your family, friends, neighbours. Get in touch with them and if in the same area, suggest coffee or a chat live on the Internet. Make sure they understand what you did in your career and what are you looking for - make room for some flexible adjustment in what you want or can do!
Now about expanding your network, there are certain venues you can follow. Enjoy an association in the field where you want to be hired and get a position for your next job, also consider joining a job-hunting club in the area. Take a class at a Technical institute, join a Health club or could be an online group of your interest.
Do your homework!
How to make the most of it?
Once you decided to attend a professional networking event, the worst thing you can do is stick out your hand and say: "Hi, I'm looking for a job!" - because people don't know how to respond to it. Build up good rapport first, and find that one or two people you feel you connect with. Engage in conversation in a natural way to establish mutual interests. Don't try to solve a problem that day, at that moment. If asked about your job, casually say that you are looking for something, - without making a big deal about it!
The question of the day is...
HOW has Technology changed the networking process?
A technology component is no longer optional in a job search; social networking sites like Linkedin, Twitter or Facebook offer effective ways to do research on people, companies, helping you discover if you know people inside a company, to reconnect with potential contracts and to establish online presence.
If you consider to have a profile in any of those pages, do not expect the "MAGIC" to happend. Also be careful of not spending too much time on line. However, use your online research to lead to offline meetings, because it is still the face-to-face networking that tends to seal the deal.