…NetWorking is for everyone…
“If you want to go somewhere, it is best to find someone who has already been there.”
Most clients’ eyes glaze over when I coach or teach that networking for information is a process which works. It just seems just too hard and a waste of time and they think there must be a way to get a job by applying for openings on job boards.
Not for most.
7 Networking steps that translate to a job
- Develop a valid reason to contact someone from a referral or someone who you don’t know. The initial focus is not on jobs but on learning.
- Establish mutual interest by asking researched and personalized questions.
- Show curiosity toward his/her work issues and challenges.
- Gain credibility through your knowledge of their work, field, etc., and your own related accomplishments or interests.
- Increase discussions in quality/quantity; follow-up with communication correspondence to find more common interests. Establish collegial or mentor/mentee relationships.
- Job opportunities and options will evolve into your discussions in the course of this process.
- With credibility and relationships, people will want to help, refer or even hire you if there are well-matched opportunities.
Sound like a fairy tale? It happens all the time.
Highlight 2-3 people in your first hand network who are in key positions and who would be willing to engage in a business discussion. Research their organization and second hand network who you’d like to network with. Invite them to coffee and promise yourself you’ll focus on their work/field—not your job needs. Set up a meeting. Networking doesn’t have to happen when you’re looking for a job. Network for the sake of networking!
Watch 10 Great Questions to ask at Networking Events: