One of the quickest and easiest ways to get a job is by networking.
In fact, a lot of job openings are never publicly advertised and so networking with the right people is the way to go.
You can think of networking as the process of building a mutually beneficial relationship with a person or people, and where there is an exchange of value that is not one-sided.
Sometimes as job-seekers, our ‘me’ mentality gets in the way of building meaningful relationships with other people.
What I mean by ‘me’ mentality, by the way, is when you are constantly looking for what opportunities you can get from other people, especially people you don’t know very well.
I hate to burst your bubble but that strategy doesn’t work.
In fact, it actually creates a very funny impression about you in the mind of the other person.
I’ll give you some examples of messages I have received from people (I don’t know) looking for help:
Message 1 – ‘I am currently searching for a job. How can I benefit from your network to secure a job?’
Message 2 – ‘I need a job of 150k and above. Please, can you help me get one?’
Now my sharing this is not to bash these people, but rather it is to make us all understand the importance of building mutually beneficial relationships with people and to hopefully prevent others from making such mistakes in the future.
I will attempt to explain what is wrong with each message:
There is a popular saying which goes ‘Your network is your net worth’, and I will never do anything to jeopardise the relationships I have built with people over the years.
This includes recommending people I don’t know or have had no real interaction with.
Think of it this way, would you want to be a guarantor for a bank loan on behalf of someone you do not know?
This person did not take any time to ‘pitch’ or introduce themselves, talk about their qualifications, work experience, core competencies etc.
They simply went for the kill to ask for a job (any job) and even specified a salary range.
What that message said to me was that this is a person who is not thinking about how they can add value to an organisation.
If you want to get a job through your network, you must be strategic with regards to how you approach presenting yourself to the people who can help.
I have a free online workshop coming up next week (Wednesday 18th May, 2016) titled ‘How To Get The Job of Your Dreams (By networking with the people who can hire you)’.
I’ll be collaborating with the amazing Lotanna Ezeogu, a networking expert, and we will be sharing practical tips and advice on how to take advantage of your existing network, and build new relationships as a way to land your next job offer.
If you’re interested in learning how to network with the people who can hire you, then click here to sign up for the free training.