Recently, several of my clients have requested help with the process of searching for a job. When I ask them what they have done so far with their job search I typically get a response like “I’ve applied on-line but haven’t gotten much response.” So, as you would imagine, many of them are surprised when I tell them that the best and most successful way to find a job today is through networking and that at least half (if not more) of their time spent searching for a job should be focused on networking.
Unfortunately, when someone suddenly becomes unemployed or is eager to find a new job quickly, they find themselves frustrated and discouraged as they have to start from the beginning with networking because they have not taken time to maintain or build their network over the years. This is why I cannot stress enough the importance and power of networking – ALWAYS. When you make networking a part of your life and view it as something that is on-going, not just a one-time event, you will find that when you are looking for a job the entire process becomes much easier and less frustrating!
Here are a few tips to get started:
Create a LinkedIn Profile that is complete, well-organized, up-to-date, and professional and do so prior to inviting others to connect with you through LinkedIn. A job seeker coach, such as myself, can work with you to ensure that you create an outstanding profile that makes a lasting impression on others.
Reconnect and stay in touch with people from your past. One of the best and easiest ways to do this is through LinkedIn however if you cannot find someone on LinkedIn then send them an email or give them a call to check-in and see how they are doing. If you are in the same area you may even want to invite them to reconnect over coffee or lunch.
Join and contribute to groups – both virtually and in-person! There are hundreds of thousands of groups to join especially on LinkedIn – consider joining alumni groups and groups associated with your profession. Be selective, as with your connections, and focus on quality over quantity. Once you join groups – make sure you add value by contributing to the conversation whether it be on-line or in-person at a local event or conference.