There have been several studies that say that up to 60% of jobs are filled through networking. You can ask people for information and advice, or ask them if they know of any job openings. If you are conducting an open job search (that is, you’re not trying to keep your job search quiet from your current employer), the more people you tell you’re searching, the more likely you are to find your next opportunity.
The more connections you make, the easier it will become. Whether mentioning your job search in casual conversation, or making calls or sending emails specifically to advance your job search, you will find that people want to help you, if they can. But you will get the best results if you ask for something specific. For example, “Do you know anyone who works at ‘Company X’” instead of, “Do you know anyone who is hiring?”
Who Should You Get Your Resume To?
- Personal Contacts: friends, relatives/cousins, neighbors, parents of your children’s friends, parents of your friends, relatives of your friends, everyone on your Christmas card list
- Community Contacts: civic and political leaders, clergy, chamber of commerce members, librarians
- Club Members: social club, country club, swim club, health club, town club, other fans of your favorite sports team, a collector’s club, sports club, professional associations, trade association members, job search club members, sorority/fraternity contacts
- Professional Contacts: your accountant, physician, real estate agent, financial advisor, attorney, banker, dentist, insurance agent, travel agent, mortgage broker
- Work Contacts: current and previous co-workers and managers, employees of competitor companies, customers, vendors, suppliers, salespeople, former co-workers or other contacts in your industry who are retired, venture capitalists
- Educational contacts: people you meet at conferences, conventions, seminars, and workshops, current and former classmates (elementary, middle, high school, college, graduate school), PTA members, former professors, college career center staff, alumni association contacts, coaches, school advisors, adult education course teachers
Include your references
In addition to your networking contacts, make sure you also get a copy of your resume to anyone who you want to be a reference for you in your job search.
Prepare your references to be contacted by your prospective employer. In addition to having your current copy of your resume, you should contact each of your references and let them know when you are scheduled for an interview (and double-check their contact information to make sure it is up-to-date) — and be sure to call them right after the interview to let them know they may be contacted to check your references.
The confidential job search
When your job search is confidential, that is, you don’t want your employer to know you are job hunting, you must be much more judicious about whom you tell about your search. Do not post your resume online or broadcast it to employers in random emails. Many industries are small worlds; the CEO you contact may be your current boss’ best friend.
Choose your confidants carefully, and ask them to keep your search confidential. Don’t assume they will do this unless asked. Even then, some will forget or think they are helping by telling others.
If keeping your job search confidential is keeping you from moving forward, contact me today. I can provide documents and processes that help your search progress without telling your secret.
Green checkmark image courtesy yodiyim via FreeDigitalPhotos.net.