Spend 80% of your job search time, energy and thought on networking. The other 20% can be spent on “traditional” job search methods like online job boards.
It is a fact that many of the best career opportunities are quietly filled through the intricate mechanisms of the grapevine.
It only makes sense to pursue every avenue, but the frustration that can arise from sending resumes, scouring job openings and trying to fit yourself into the “job description box” can slow down even the most optimistic job seeker. This is because trying to reach a decision maker when responding to general job postings is next to impossible.
Regardless of where you search for opportunities, you will ultimately gain a position only by coming face to face with the people who know about that position. The more people you network with, are referred to, and interview with, the better your chances. If you don’t go out and meet people face to face, your chances are greatly decreased.
When networking, it’s important to remember that everyone knows something that you do not know. Often, beginning networkers think that they are wasting their time by talking to people who may have nothing to offer them. After all, you want to get a new position, and perhaps you need to do so quickly! Veteran networkers know that every person you talk with is valuable to you or knows someone else who could be.
4 networking tips to remember:
- When networking, persistence pays. Many of us tend to believe a “no reply” indicates the person we are contacting has no interest in responding to us and we don’t feel comfortable continuing to follow up. Don’t forget – everyone gets busy. Don’t give up; try again, but be respectful of others’ time as well.
- If you are interested in talking with someone, there is a reason why. When you approach that person remember to pay a genuine compliment about something specific that person has done. It also goes a long way when you have your face to face meeting or phone conversation to efficiently bridge between your accomplishments and what you appreciate about the other person’s achievements.
- After you visit be sure to send a thank you note. Include some specifics that were discussed in your meeting. If appropriate, include that you will follow up to get referrals.
- Always include your email and phone number in all of your written communication.
NOTE TO CMI CLIENTS: Remember to stay positive and reach out to any of us at CMI when you need help!