Many people are looking desperately for suitable jobs, but ask yourself whether you’re just working hard at it or smart at it. Many get so disappointed by the entire process that they give up entirely. Please don’t! Via this article, I want to revive your interest by attempting to logically explain the job search process and how to go about it.
The answer lies in being effective at networking. Only a small percentage of people say they enjoy meeting new people while in transition. An equally small percentage network out of necessity. However, because they may have had bad experiences and have come to believe networking to be a waste of time, a majority of people in transition don’t take advantage of the opportunities coming their way.
The objective of networking is not to meet people but to be referred by people (1) who can talk to others about your past performance and (2) who are willing to recommend you. Such recommendations are remarkably more valued by a hiring decision maker versus simply interviewing people based on their résumés. A recommendation by a trusted source based on past performance on the job is more convincing—and a better predictor of future performance and potential—than relying on gut feelings after the interview.
There are two steps for this process to be successful. The first is to choose a few people who know your past performance to the point that they’re not only willing to vouch for you but also willing to go the extra mile by actually putting in a good word for you. However, you want to make sure that those people are familiar with the information in your actual résumé or at least your LinkedIn profile. To ensure that, ask for their feedback on either one or both. Then ask them to either call on your behalf or introduce you to someone they consider being in a position to help you. I know this procedure can be highly uncomfortable, but assure the people that you would do the same for them if the shoe were on the other foot.
The second step is to reverse the networking process. Start with a job opening that interests you. Next, find someone in your circle of connections who can introduce you to someone else at that company. Once you’ve made that inside connection, you must become focused and proactive. Ask for further connections until you get closer to the decision makers for the job. This sounds difficult and is usually out of most people’s comfort zones, but it is very effective. Those who are persistent get favorable results. At times, you’ll feel you’ve hit a brick wall or ended up in a cul-de-sac. But don’t give up. Keep going, because the method works.
Admittedly, the headwind, the pushback, and the system’s failure rates are considerable. It’s easy to become disappointed and to want to give up. To stay focused, establish a reasonable target of connections you want to make each week. Challenge yourself to stay the course. Remember famous film producer Samuel Goldwyn, who said, “The harder I work, the luckier I become.” It’s so true. And I wish you lots of luck.