How To Effectively Network To Help Your Job Search
Networking could gain you the dream job! You may be thinking ‘What is networking and how will it benefit me?’ Although networking has business connotations, it is a powerful tool for job seekers in any industry. Networking is like managing your own public relations, you build and maintain relationships with other professionals, to gain advice and further connections.
How to network:
Your current network
Write a list of all the people in your network, friends, family, neighbours, work colleagues, former colleagues, high school or university friends and past lecturers. You will probably be surprised by the amount of people you have contact with.
Contact your existing network
Shorten your network list by focusing on the people who could advise you in a specific industry or job role. Then communicate with them, tell them you are looking for a job in a specific industry and ask if they have any information or any contacts in the field. Don’t ask for a job, just ask for some advice.
Networking is not a one way route, you have to give to take, and once you have a steady relationship with your network you must maintain it. Think long term, don’t only network when looking for a job because professionals won’t want to help you. Communicate all year round and give advice to those who have advised you.
If you are nervous about networking then remember:
- Connecting with old colleagues or friends should be enjoyable.
- Redundancy is a very stressful experience so interacting with people in your network may provide moral support and boost self esteem.
- Most people enjoy helping others, so don’t be worried about asking for help, most will be honoured you asked for their advice and expert opinion.
- A large percentage of the population understand how it feels to face unemployment, they will understand your situation.