Networking as one of the key components of a successful job search. As a career coach, I encourage and teach my clients to have what I refer to as “information gathering” conversations as one of the components of their job search strategy. Some career coaches and recruiters refer to these as “exploratory interviews.” Whatever you call it – networking is key to your job search success. Especially when you consider that statistically between 65-80% of new jobs are secured through referrals.
Networking and talking to people who work at companies that you are interested is all about building relationships. Learning how others got their start in their career, or what projects a company is working on, can help you focus your direction, learn about new career options, and reflect on your potential fit with an organization.
Building relationships is a powerful networking tool. Not only are you building your professional network, you could be “the” one who gets a phone call when a new position opens up. You can have conversations with people, whether their company has any current job openings or not. Keep in mind, that most companies welcome employee referrals of high-caliber talent. Being proactive in your search and making connections can help open doors for you. These conversations can bridge the distance between where you are in your career today and where you want to be.
As a quick anecdote: Remember the call I received from one of my coaching clients, sharing how she “serendipitously” received a call about a new job opportunity from someone she sat down and had an information gathering conversation with a few months ago? Well, I’m happy to report back that she secured the job offer and is now working in her dream role in a new industry!
If you want to learn more about how to have information gathering conversations, please feel free to contact me. And if you have your own “serendipitous” experience – I’d love to hear about it!
“Take a leap of faith and begin this wondrous new year by believing. Believe in yourself. And believe that there is a loving Source – a Sower of Dreams just waiting to be asked to help you make your dreams come true.” ~ Sarah Ban Breathnach
When’s the last time you really believed in yourself? Get honest with yourself. When it comes to your career, when was the last time you believed that you could get that promotion or pursue your utopian career goals?
Let’s face it. The wear and tear of lack of appreciation or recognition for your contribution at work takes a toll on your self-esteem and confidence. After a while you stop believing that what you do makes a difference, or that you really are capable of doing more, of contributing at a greater level. So you start going through the motions. Showing up for work when your heart really isn’t in it anymore. That’s even more exhausting; you leave work tired, so you sit on the couch and watch TV numbing out your feelings so you don’t have to face the pain you are really feeling. Yet that quiet voice refuses to be quiet. It’s nudging you to step forward. To take a chance. To dream again. To believe in you again.
“Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t–you’re right.” ~ Henry Ford
If you feel frustrated in your current position, undervalued, unappreciated and feel called to do something else with your life you may wonder where to begin. Often as a career coach, I get asked by clients how to rediscover their passion and discover new options for the next chapter in their career.
In my opinion, one of the best career guide books out there is “What Color is Your Parachute” by Richard Bolles. The seven stories analysis is a career assessment exercise that has helped thousands of job seekers discover truths about themselves. Discovery hidden talents and unique abilities is what we use to develop their unique value proposition as part of their strategic job search plan.
“Believe in yourself! Have faith in your abilities. Without a humble but reasonable confidence in your own powers you cannot be successful or happy. “ ~ Norman Vincent Peale
As we begin a wondrous new year, I encourage you to believe in yourself again. Believe in your dreams. Give yourself permission to pursue your career goals – a happier you, a more appreciated you, and a more meaningful career path awaits. Begin.