Getting the job of your dreams involves more than just sending in a killer resume. You need the right contacts who will help you identify the right job openings and recommend you to decision makers in the company you want to work in.
The following networking tips will help you build and develop the contact list that can help you find the job of your dreams.
Start with the people you know
Your immediate contact is a good starting point to building your network. This includes your family members, your close friends, neighbors and co-workers. Think of people you know from school, from your former place of employment, friends of friends, friends of your spouse and basically everyone you can get hold of. Any of these people are in the position to get information on current job openings that would suit your skills and qualifications. Don’t forget that it takes one person to connect you to another person who may be a potential source of employment.
Take advantage of social media
While it is true that one-on-one meetings are more effective in building relationships, many profitable connections have been started and built on social media. Social media is one place where you can meet just about anyone. You can meet people on social media platforms who share the same interest and passion as you. Make use of platforms like Twitter, Facebook and Linkedin to look for people with the same skills as you, or who work in industries or companies you are interested in. These people may be in a position to know of available openings that match your skill set.
Reach out to your network
It is not enough to simply build a network of people who are in the right position to help you in your career. You have to reach out to them. The best of connections cannot help you if they do not know about your situation. You need to open up to them and let them know that you are in the market for a job offer. Be clear on the kind of work you want to do and ask them to keep an eye out for any information relevant to your job search. You may think that people are too busy with their own issues to help you, but you will be surprised at the number of positive responses you get.
Attend trade shows and seminars
Trade shows, seminars and conferences are very good places to meet and network with people of similar interest and skills. Decision makers in top companies are usually found at these seminars and you might have the good fortune to walk into one of them. It is a good idea to have copies of your resume on you when going for meetings like this. Also make sure that you have a well prepared elevator speech. You may have less than 5 minutes to introduce yourself and impress the person who holds the key to your new job.
Find a way to reciprocate
For your networking efforts to be a success, it has to be a two way street. You need to look for ways to cultivate mutually beneficial relationships, where you don’t only receive but give also. Once in a while, send them a thank you note; ask about their families, their jobs and talk about any topic you know they would be interested in.
By growing and nurturing the right relationships, you will establish a strong network of people you can count on to help you achieve your career goals.