No matter how well you know how to fix a computer, you might loose that job to another guy who lives just by the sacred rule of ‘ctrl-alt-del’ but knows the right people.
Often, getting that much desired job is not as much about what you know; but rather who you know. So it’s important that you take that extra little effort to fill that missing link between your resume and a plush office and here’s how you do it.
It might sound a little far fetched but it always helps if you start networking your way to a job in college itself. There are various professional societies in college which act as a bridge between the academic and the industrial world. Enrol into these societies and you’ll probably meet several people that you might want to maintain contact with as you get into the real world. Moreover, these activities also go a long way to help you decide which area you would want to specialise in, and trust me, the sooner you make this decision, the better.
Another source of useful contacts could be the parents of your friends in college or people from the alumni who are from the same industry that you are interested in. So, just look around and scout for opportunities to establish these contacts, at least to get an early insight into these careers if not to actually land an internship.
Look closer around your house
Looking far and wide for a contact might just make you miss out on the ones existing closer near your house. You never know, your neighbour might just be that link between you and that dream job. So keep your ears open and be a little more outgoing. Even if you don’t get a contact, you may just make a very good friend. It’s a win-win situation.
Also make it a point to accompany your dad for some of his gatherings. Friends of fathers often make for useful people to network with and they might even help you obtain an important interview. And what’s more, your dad’s buddy might just have a pretty daughter.
In the professional environment
If you are already working, then you probably know by now that there is no dearth of opportunities to make useful contacts that might help you in the long run. Always keep your card handy in important meetings and conferences and don’t miss out on an opportunity to exchange contact details with any person you might find useful and influential enough. In the process, you can even engage in some small talk to know a little more about the person. It’ll help if you jot down some tit-bits of information about this person at the back of the visiting card, so that when you call him a few months later, you have something to talk about and don’t straight away go “Hey bro, I need a job.”
Say it right
Now, once you make that all important phone call, make sure you project yourself and your requirements well. Here are a few points that’ll come in handy.
- Don’t waste too much time to get to the point, especially if you are calling during the office hours. If you are looking for a job, tell them that you are looking towards exploring a new job opportunity.
- Prepare, beforehand, a brief and to the point statement of what you’re looking for and what kind of help you would like.
- Also give a brief review of your background and qualifications.
- There is a chance that this person may not be able to help you. In that case you can ask for contacts of two or three people who he might think would be useful.
- If he says that he will ‘look into it’, it’s up to you to follow up. Remember that getting you a job is not this person’s priority. It’s yours.
No, I’m not talking social networks here, though you’re not far off the mark. In recent years, various Business networking sites have cropped up over the internet. Sites like LinkedIn, Ryze and the Indian version, Brijj, are all powerful tools to expand your business network. While you are making your profile on one of these networks, be very careful about the content you put on it. No one wants to know how many pet dogs you have. No, all they are interested in is how qualified, experienced and business savvy you are. Don’t hesitate to drop names and show off your achievements and abilities in your profile. In fact, it’s quite de rigeur to actually boast about your business and professional abilities here.
- Whenever you meet someone, exchange business cards.
- Always carry a positive attitude and look forward to meeting people. You never know when you may come across someone who may know someone with a job vacancy somewhere. A pen in your pocket and a few business cards in your wallet - that should do the trick.
- Don’t hesitate to approach people. Remember that you have nothing to loose.
- Don’t hesitate to help others either. It’ll surprise you how well people remember favours.
- Preserve your network’s ‘staying power’ by obtaining their personal cell-phone numbers or at least their personal email id’s, just in case they leave their companies and move on to bigger things.
- Always stay in touch with everyone in your network through the odd phone-call or a postcard.
- And lastly show appreciation for the help you receive, not only to those you help you directly, but also the ones who have contributed indirectly by providing you with the contacts.
So networking is not just about bumping off a few emails and then hoping for the best. It requires time and effort to get results, which are more often the not, surprisingly fruitful. Socialising and communication with people is as much a part of your job as the actual job itself.
Arrange by dearJulius.com Team