It is appears that the job situation is improving, albeit slowly. This means that there are a number of job opportunities available for those looking for new jobs. And, thanks to technology, it is now possible to find jobs with a little help from the Internet. And it’s not all submitting resumes to job search sites. Many people malign Twitter and Facebook, but they might actually be able to help you get a job. And, of course, networking still works offline as well. Here are some networking tips that can help you find a new job.
Build Your Brand
When you are looking for a new job, you are selling a brand. When you network offline, you want to present a professional image. The same is true of your online efforts. Create profiles that are consistent across social media that you are using for professional purposes. A LinkedIn profile is usually a good idea for job seekers, and having a Twitter account can’t hurt, as long as you try to be useful. What you do with Facebook is up to you, but know that, even if you don’t think of Facebook as part of your professional brand, some potential employers will look. Take down questionable pictures, or at least make sure your privacy settings are such that such pictures are not public.
You want to prepare the ground by make sure that your online profiles highlight your good qualities, and what you can do. Don’t make your profiles long, but do make them consistent and relevant.
Look for People, Not for Jobs
Instead of trying to find a specific job, consider looking for specific people. Think about the types of companies you want to work for, and the kinds of things you want to do. You can perform a search for people who work for a company of interest to you, and contact them through social media. Find them on Twitter, LinkedIn (a great choice) or some other social media site. Make sure you understand, though, how this person prefers to be contacted. While making professional connections on LinkedIn is often an acceptable way to approach someone you don’t know, you should be sure to make LinkedIn connections the right way. Also keep in mind that many people prefer not to keep their work and private life separate, and do not appreciate having their Facebook space invaded by work matters.
Offline, this works as well. If there is a place you would like to work, make an appointment to visit with some of the key people. You don’t have to ask for a job up front, but you can make connections and get the lay of the land. Keep in touch, and, later, when the opportunity arises, you’ll already have an in.
Make sure to follow through. If someone provides you with a referral, make sure that you follow through quickly. Also, if you have promised to provide something by a certain time, make sure that you do. Prove that you are reliable — the kind of person that others want to work with.
Sincerity is important when networking, as is helping others. You are looking for help from others, so you should be prepared to help others. If you can introduce people who might work out for each other, do so. You can also answer questions and mentor. No, you shouldn’t give away everything for free, but you can help as you expect to be helped. Besides, if you are a powerful resource for others, potential employers will eventually notice.
Do you have any other networking tips?
Photo credit: mark raheja