Job networking is one of the most powerful tools you can use when looking to change careers or get a new job. Job networking, or career networking as it is sometimes called, is interacting with others and discussing potential job opportunities or leads. One of the primary purposes for that is to identify job leads. The more people who know you are looking for a job, the better your chances of finding out about opportunities. I’ve gotten at least two jobs directly due to networking.
You must have a brief elevator speech about yourself when networking with people. Your elevator speech should include your name, your job, your current situation, and the opportunities you are looking for. Job networking is critical when looking for a new gig.
Here are a few people that you can network with:
Friends & Family
Don’t be afraid to let your friends & family know that you are looking for a job. Pride will allow you to continue to be jobless. That’s not what you want. Tell them your situation. They can get you an interview or even get you hired places. When I was unemployed three years ago, I told people I was looking for a new gig. A couple of friends got me interviews with their perspective companies.
If you still keep in contact with some of your old co-workers, contact them. Their current job may be hiring.
Barber or Hairdresser
Good barbers or hairdressers have a lot of clients. Their customers may come from all walks of life. They can reach out to them and see if they know anyone who is hiring.
Church members are good people to network with as well. Some may own businesses, while others may be managers or supervisors.
Career Counselors at School
If you are still in college, you can contact your career counselors. They should be able to have several leads for you, depending on what your major is. That’s their job. Check with them twice a year to see what opportunities they may know of.
Above were people you could network with. It doesn’t stop there. You can also network at different places. Below are a few of them:
The first place that you can network is at your current job. If your company is big and has several departments, you should take the time to meet people in those departments. They can let you know about opportunities as they arise.
A lot of influential and successful people attend worship. Besides worship service, other events happen in the church, such as Bible study and committee meetings.
Believe it or not, you can network on the internet. Social media sites like Facebook and LinkedIn have allowed this to happen. On both of these sites, you can make groups. I’m in a couple of groups that help people look for employment opportunities. You should find a few groups if you have a certain degree or are in a fraternity or sorority. You can also leverage the internet and its vast reach to find out if you like any prospective job offer. For example, some of the best software engineer jobs might be a click away.
Before people have too many, mingle with the guests at these events. Have some business cards ready to pass out. Make sure that you get a few from the attendees as well.
The final place to check when job networking with someone is during volunteer activities. You never know who you could meet out there. Be ready to introduce yourself and talk with people if need be.
Many people are in one professional association or the other, but they fail to use it as leverage. Attend meetings and training by these professional bodies and network with the members. If you are not a member yet, start joining now. It helps a lot.
Human Resources Experts
We have employed human resources experts as friends and on social media. Network for jobs with them. Sometimes, they may need a candidate to fill a vacancy. If you have them as friends, discuss with them and ensure you catch up.
Linkedin is a website for professionals. It is excellent for networking for a job. Open an account and update your education and experience. Don’t forget the projects you have done. Leave your profile “open to work” so recruiters can see you. You can also check the job section for vacancies that interest you. Apply for as many as you can.
There are several job boards that you can join where you can be updated with new job openings. Some are website pages, while others may be social media groups. Some job boards allow you to register, create a profile, search for jobs, and apply.
If you want to network for jobs, use the company websites. This option is excellent for you if you have a dream place to work; get their website and read through the career section for vacancies. If they accept unsolicited applications, don’t hesitate to send one in. Do the same for more companies.
You can contact the previous interviewers to know why you were not an excellent fit for the job you were interviewed for. You can then skillfully create a formal relationship. They can help reshape you and your CV and recommend you for another opening somewhere else.
There are new ways of creating a personalized advert these days. This is to create a blog showcasing their education, experience, and skills. It also shows the different job offers they look out for. This webpage is then carefully placed in strategic places where people who matter can see it.
Some professional training makes you ready for employment in some professions. Spot these training activities and try to acquire them if you can. However, many of them are expensive, but try to purchase the training if you can. Become certified where necessary.
With these tips, you can easily network for jobs. Don’t work with one of them. Please put all of them to practice. Remember, the result is the important thing. Try to combine all the tips to get the result.
After making contacts:
- Keep them informed about your job search status.
- Make sure you answer e-mails and phone calls promptly.
- Be ready to help others when they are looking for a job.
- Send thank you notes to show you appreciate their time and efforts.
Networking for jobs is a job on its own. You need to go at it with an open heart if you want results. Some may argue that there are no jobs, but the truth is that people get jobs every day. It means people know how to network for jobs and get results.
These are just a few tips to help you network during your job search.
Jason Butler is the owner of My Money Chronicles, a website where he discusses personal finance, side hustles, travel, and more. Jason is from Atlanta, Georgia. He graduated from Savannah State University with his BA in Marketing. Jason has been featured in Forbes, Discover, and Investopedia.