Tag: networking (page 1 of 2)

4 Best Practices of an Effective Networker

Whether this is your first go around searching for a full-time job or you simply wish to add “effective networker” to your arsenal of skills, a few simple tips can never hurt. Have you ever heard the saying, “It’s all about who you know”? Today’s job market is completely saturated with individuals looking for their perfect position. To set yourself apart, you may find it beneficial to have some meaningful connections in the workforce. Even if you don’t plan on working for your specific connection, they may know someone elsewhere who can better assist you. That is what its all about. Networking is an effective web of people who can help you get to where you need to go, and vice versa. I have made it my personal mission to discover and learn the basics of effective networking that can be easily implemented into your arsenal, and they include:

Go Where the People Are

This seems like a no-brainer, right? The only way to meet people is to go where they are. While this seems simple, it can be quite intimidating for most people. Comfort zones are where a lot of individuals like to stay, however it’s the people who dare to be uncomfortable, even for a minute, that end up making those meaningful connections. Next time you are at a work conference attempt to say hello to someone new. Engage them. Fresh out of college? No problem! Think about whom you do know–a professor, an advisor, maybe someone from your internship or your part-time job. Work on these relationships and you will be surprised how much they can help. After all, you never know what connections these individuals have.

Know What you Want

I have spoken to the power of an “elevator pitch” in previous articles, however in the realm of networking, it is especially important. When you introduce yourself to someone, it is important to be able to tell the individual who you are and where you would like to go. Even if this person is a previous connection, being able to explain what you want can help them perhaps connect you with someone that can better assist you.

Work the Room

Ok, you have done it; you are trying something new or you maybe you’re at your very first work conference. The biggest mistake you can make when trying to put yourself out there, is to huddle at a table with the group of people you came with. While these people can be incredibly helpful in introducing you to new people, it is important that you find ways to meet people. Introduce yourself, make a conscious effort to have a conversation and most importantly remember their name so you can connect with them later after the event. Better yet, ask them for a business card!

The Follow Up

After making the initial connection, it is important that within the next few days you follow up. This is where knowing the ins and outs of using LinkedIn can be used to your advantage. Send them a connection invite, and thank them for talking to you. Mention something memorable from the conversation, so they can remember who you are. This will be the step that finalizes the connection you have made.

You’ll repeat each of these steps over and over as you gain new connections and branch out of your comfort zone. Whether you’re attending an event for work or heading to your first career fair, it’s important to remember to not only bring your most professional side to the table, but also be yourself. Authenticity lends to your credibility and can help you network more efficiently than you ever thought possible.

Is LinkedIn Really That Important?

I first heard about LinkedIn while I was sitting in a classroom listening to my Professor discuss the importance of networking, and he briefly covered LinkedIn. Just as briefly as he touched on the subject of LinkedIn as a networking tool, I forgot about it. Knowing what I do about the tool now, I now know that was a mistake.

It is no secret that Social Media platforms are increasingly becoming the way we connect with one another. We share birthdays, vacations and thoughts with the click of a mouse on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. So if the Internet really is the place we are connecting, why are more people not using LinkedIn? According to a study shared on http://business.linkedin.com, the top recruiters for business are “60% more engaged with LinkedIn recruiting tools than the average recruiter”.1 If this is where employers are looking to hire, we should all run, not walk, to either fill out a profile, or improve upon that neglected profile that may be out of date

You’re probably thinking, “I have a profile. This does not apply to me.” While it is true that having a LinkedIn profile is half the battle, using the profile effectively will win the war. In a Forbes article I recently read, the importance of actively using your profile is discussed with the simple explanation that it’s not uncommon for a recruiter to look at your LinkedIn profile to determine whether or not to reach out to you.2

This behavior isn’t a unique scenario, as many recruiters will often review your LinkedIn profile to discover additional work-related information. Whether it is in our personal lives, or a job search, we turn to the internet as a reliable source of information and to seek out everything from restaurant reviews to career information.

Ultimately, networking tools like LinkedIn can help you connect with friends, colleagues and more. Not only can you track connections and stay in touch with professionals in your field, you can consistently form new ones and expand your network. In today’s hyper connected world, you never know who could help you land your dream job.



1. “The Ultimate List of Hiring Statistics”; Business.LinkedIn.com

2. “Recruiters Say: Avoid LinkedIn at Your Peril”; Forbes.com

3 Career Resolutions for 2017

It’s a new year and you’re likely looking ahead at a blank canvas and thinking about the things you want to accomplish over the next 12 months. While you may have set resolutions for your personal life, January is also a good time to consider your professional goals and think about the things you want to achieve in your career. Whether you are currently in a position or are still searching for the right opportunity, there are always chances to improve and prepare. Take a look at these three simple and attainable career resolutions to follow in 2017.

Learn new skills.

Whether it’s a free webinar, an industry conference or a multi-week training course, take every opportunity you can to continue learning. This not only allows you to add continuing education to your resume, but also exposes you to situational examples and case studies that activate creative thinking functions that may be helpful in your own line of business. There are countless online resources like Coursera, CodeAcadamy and Lynda that can help polish your current skills or add a new area of knowledge to your resume.

Update your resume.

Regardless of whether you are searching for a job or not, it’s a good idea to keep your resume updated with your most current positions, job responsibilities, skills, achievements and any certifications you may have received. After all, your resume acts as an overview of your career and professional brand – you never know when someone may ask to see it or when a job opportunity may become available that you are interested in. Be sure to update your resume on LinkedIn, as well!

Network, network, network.

Even if you aren’t actively searching for a job, it never hurts to establish connections. There’s always the chance you may meet someone who can assist you with your current job or who may know of an ideal opportunity for you–even if it is a year from now! Make a plan to network with other professionals in your industry throughout the coming year and stick to it. Research relevant industry associations and find a local chapter to join, attend learning luncheons and grab business cards of the people you meet, and expand your LinkedIn connections. It’s all about who you know!

Think you don’t have time for professional development? It doesn’t have to be difficult! Having small, simple goals is a great way to put your best foot forward in your career or in the job search. There’s no time to waste, so let’s start the year off right!

Make Yourself Available & Be Seen

We can’t even begin to tell you how important networking is for job seekers. Whether your touching base with a potential employer on social media or interacting with employers at job fairs or networking events, its important to exude confidence and be able to speak on the fly. If you’re uncomfortable, check out local Toastmasters organizations who can help develop your public speaking skills.

For additional resources and job seeker advice, visit the Social Jobs Partnership on Facebook.

3 Tips for Finding the Internship of Your Dreams

3 Tips for IntershipsIt’s that time of year again…back to school. As the fall semester commences at colleges and universities across America, some students may be regretting their decision to forgo an internship. Unfortunately, getting back into a motivated mindset can be difficult after a laid-back summer vacation but it’s never too early to start preparing for the next semester’s opportunities. Your initial job search may leave you feeling less than optimistic but the truth is, your perfect internship is out there. You just have to find it! Take a look at these five tips for finding the internship you’ve always dreamed of.

 

Consider Your Interests, Not Just Your Major

They say if you love what you do, you’ll never work a day in your life. All too often students get hung up on their major when considering a career field and completely overlook the idea that they can still work in an area that also suits their passion. Where are your interests, what do you love? For example, if you are going to school for accounting and are also a major foodie, forget the big accounting firm and consider a bookkeeping position at a posh downtown restaurant. Are you majoring in event planning but have a passion for fashion? Look into fashion show production. Getting into an industry you love early on in your career can help you establish a positive reputation, build connections and ultimately get your foot in the door for future opportunities.

Find groups or associations related to your interests and check their websites and social media accounts to see if they, or their members, are looking for interns. If this doesn’t turn up any prospects, it never hurts to simply ask for what you want. Find a contact at the organization you are interested in, tell them about your passion for what they do and ask them if there’s any way you can get involved. You’ll never know if you don’t ask! Whether it’s a paid internship or volunteer hours, this can always lead to bigger and better things in the future.

 

Look At Your Contacts

Networking is said to be one of the most valuable activities to take place during the college experience – and its no surprise that your connections can also be your most valuable tool during the job search. The best place to start is to think about whom you already know, or whom your friends and family may know. Ask around to see if your parents, relatives, or your friends’ parents know anyone working in the field you are interested in and ask if they can connect you with them. It’s also a good idea to find out if there are any groups, clubs or relevant on-campus events where you could meet people in your field of interest. This experience looks good on your resume!

 

Visit Your School’s Career Services Center

If your connections don’t pan out, your school’s career services center can be another great resource. Oftentimes, colleges and universities have partnerships with employers to help them recruit students and recent grads for their open positions. Students applying through these programs may be more likely to get an internship than a student applying from an outside source. Aside from helping you find positions that you are interested in, they also provide other valuable services such as professional etiquette development, networking opportunities, interview preparation workshops (and mock interviews), as well as resume and cover letter assistance. They are there to help – don’t be afraid to take advantage of their free services!

Once you’ve secured an interview, it’s your time to shine! Be sure to do your research about the organization in advance, arrive a few minutes early and be prepared to tell the interviewer why you are the best person for the job. Good luck and remember – if at first you don’t succeed, try, try again!

Why Networking is Important

The following post is from Classy Career Girl, a blog written by Anna Runyan, that provides advice to young professionals on how to be classy as they climb the corporate ladder. Her blog covers topics such as business chic fashion, career motivation, personal development, networking, and office etiquette. Connect with her at http://www.classycareergirl.com. If you would like to learn more about how to find a career that you love to go to every day, you can also checkout her free video training series at http://www.getmycareerunstuck.com.

It’s not what you know, but who you know. Who you know can mean the difference in whether or not you end up reaching your future dreams and goals.There are so many reasons why networking is important, personally and professionally. Whether you want to stand out from the crowd during your job search, rise the ranks at your current company or just have a good support network to be there for you when you need it. I know that I would not be where I am today in my professional journey if I had not made networking a top priority in my life when I was graduating from college and as I started working at my first job. Networking helped me land an internship during college that turned into a full time job and helped me get promoted at my first job. I also built a great support network at my church and that network helped me through a tough time that I went through. No matter where you are in life, you can’t get around the fact that networking is crucial to your success and personal well being.

So what are the barriers that might be holding you back from networking?

  1. The first barrier that might be in your way is that you never know what to say. I hate that awkward introduction and I not knowing what to say to people I don’t know. The key here is to be genuine, not think about yourself and what you are going to talk about and instead think about what you want to ask and learn about other people instead. People are just as scared as you in the room and why not make others feel better and take the focus off of you and onto them.
  2. Another barrier may be if you are an introvert. An introvert is a person who is energized by being alone and whose energy is drained by being around other people. If you are an introvert like me, it is hard to be open and let strangers into your life. To network, you have to be open and curious. You must also show up and be present in all conversations. Sometimes the hardest part is getting to the event but you will be glad you did once you get there. Meet one person and start speaking with them and asking questions. This way, it will be easier to meet others since you know one person very well. Also, don’t be afraid to speak up if you have something to say.
  3. Another barrier is thinking you are way too busy to network. I know I am exhausted after work. This was my biggest pitfall. I am often too busy with work and school to reach out and connect with someone over lunch or a quick dinner. You have to make networking a priority, which is why I always scheduled networking events and meetings into my calendar so that I got in the habit of meeting people for lunch or dinner and not going directly home after work.

How did I get over my networking barriers? It all stated at the beginning of 2011, when I was preparing to graduate from business school and trying to figure out the next step in my career. I knew that networking would be a key to success in the job search, but I also knew I was—and still am—an introvert, and the prospect of meeting new people has never been easy for me. Still, I was determined to knock down my barriers to networking and meet the people who would help me reach my dreams and goals. So I decided to embark on a networking challenge where every month, I would meet with four people I already knew but would like to get to know even better, as well as four completely new people. I called it the 4×4 Networking Challenge.

And at the end of 2011, I added 48 new people to my network and strengthened relationships with 48 friends, co-workers, and family members. Not to mention, a year of networking like crazy gave me a lot of valuable insights on what it takes to be a good networker—something I never thought I’d be able to claim.

If you are ready to reach your dreams and goals and take your networking to the next level, challenge yourself to a networking challenge. Write it down, find an accountability partner and start today!

The Top 15 States with the Most Jobs

In the last few months, unemployment rates have gone down slightly; however, it is still difficult to find a job in this economy. The U.S. Department of Labor shows that Nevada, Rhode Island, and California have the highest unemployment rates ranging from 11.6 to 10.7 percent. If you are looking for a job in a specific area, http://jobs.jobs/ can help you find the right job for you! This website lists jobs based on top searches, top companies, top countries, top states and top cities. You can also search what kind of job you are looking for and where you want to land your perfect job. The top 15 states with the most jobs include:

This website helps you find the perfect job for you in the area that you want. http://jobs.jobs/ is an amazing resource when job hunting.

The Help Wanted blog is brought to you by DirectEmployers, a non-profit association of global employers, which provides simple, sophisticated solutions for Human Resources and Recruitment.

Tips for Maintaining a Positive Attitude during an Interview

Interview with Candee Chambers, Cardinal Health

During interviews it’s easy to often time dwell on past hardships. However, Candee Chambers with Cardinal Health offers advice on how staying positive during your interview can go a long with a recruiter. Learn how focusing on strengths can help you make the most of your employer interviews.

The Help Wanted blog is brought to you by DirectEmployers, a non-profit association of global employers, which provides simple, sophisticated solutions for Human Resources and Recruitment.

Advice for Job Seekers with Disabilities

Interview with James Emmett, CLIICC Center

Are you a person with a disability looking for employment? Disability consultant James Emmett with CLIICC Center addresses how he overcame his disability and found a job he was passionate about. Discover how by matching your skill set with an interest you find enjoyable can make a world of difference during your job search.

The Help Wanted blog is brought to you by DirectEmployers, a non-profit association of global employers, which provides simple, sophisticated solutions for Human Resources and Recruitment.

The Importance of Using Keywords and Tailoring Your Resume

Interview with John Whalin, United Airlines

One of the most important pieces of a job search is to have a resume tailored to the position you are searching for. John Whalin with United Airlines talks about how technology is driving employers to do keyword-based searching in their applicant tracking system. Learn how using ‘hot words’ of that company can help bring your resume to the forefront as a contender for the position.

The Help Wanted blog is brought to you by DirectEmployers, a non-profit association of global employers, which provides simple, sophisticated solutions for Human Resources and Recruitment.

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