Get Connected - How To Network For Jobs
By Colin P McDonald

Having a great resume and a killer cover letter is an essential beginning to your job search, but these should not be the only tools in your toolbox. This article will explain how to connect with a network of people who can assist you to achieve your goal of a dream job and prevent you from being an "invisible candidate" hidden in the torrent of job board applications that flows throughout the web.

Everyone has a network of people whom they have come into contact over the years. For example, your friends, family and work colleagues, form an important part of your social and business network. There are many other categories of people that you can consider members of your network: former colleagues, friends of friends, members of the same club or professional association, neighbours and so on. Create your own network diagram of contacts, and then identify those you wish to re-establish contact with.

It is important to maintain regular contact with members of your network. If you have lost contact with any former network contact, be sure to resume contact before asking for any help in looking for a new position. Only pass your resume to a network contact if you both believe that you have been given a concrete opportunity.

Networking is a two-way process with both "give" and "take". You must be proactive in helping your contacts by providing them with useful information or potential employment or business opportunities. Keep up-to-date with events in your target market and pass on any tips helpful to your contacts.

Business cards are a useful tool when building your network. Nothing pretentious is required, just your name, position, company and contact details. After an introductory conversation, you can ask a potential contact for their card, and then present your card to them. If the contact does not have a business card, then note down their details on the back of one of your own cards. It's that easy.

After the introductory meeting, you can note down any further information you have gleaned from your new contact. Any information about their family, hobbies, sports, likes and dislikes may prove helpful in forging a bond with that person. You can then ask pertinent questions and provide useful information at future meetings. For example, sending an e-mail to your contact with a relevant news story will be appreciated.

It is important to follow up an introductory meeting by following through on any promises made. If not you will look unprofessional and disorganised. By helping someone else, even in a small way, you will be remembered in future when your contact is in a position to help you. Don't forget it's a two-way process.

In summary, creating and nurturing a network of contacts is a vital tool in your job hunting toolbox. Do not expect any immediate payoffs but be sure that you are forging bonds that will prove mutually beneficial in your future career and life. You will feel good about helping other people and will make new friends for life. Get networking and start connecting today!

See my Website: for more job hunting tips and how to create great cover letters.

Article Source: