Looking at our vacancies is a great way to find a job, but you can improve your chances by get out and about too. How? By networking.
Lots of people are a bit suspicious about networking. They think it means going around selling yourself and dishing out business cards left, right and centre. Well the good news is that it's not about going all out to get what you want in a pushy way.
Networking should be based on friendly two-way conversations, but it helps if you know what you want before you start.
1. Work out which sector/s you are targeting. Saying you want any old job means you could end up applying for vacancies for which you do not have the skills or experience.
2. Ask yourself if you know anyone in your target sector, or know someone who may know someone who is. Get in touch with any likely contacts - perhaps invite them out for a drink or a coffee.
3. Don't ask for a job immediately, and don't try to 'sell' yourself - it looks desperate. Instead, ask for advice - people usually love giving advice so they are very likely to help you. If they are in your target sector ask about how you can get into it too. In the process of explaining they may remember where there is likely to be a vacancy. If they are not in your target sector, ask if they know someone who is.
4. Ask if you can note down names and contact details of people who might help you. It may be worth getting your own business cards printed so your contacts will have all your details if they come across anyone else who can help.
5. Ask if there is anything you can do to help them. Networking is meant to be a two-way street. The more you help people, the more help you are likely to get.
6. Don't forget you can also use networking to find people who work for the companies that are advertising vacancies. Getting information about a company means you can target your application more closely to what they want.
Always let people know how you got on as a result of their help and be sure to thank them, whether or not you got a job. They will appreciate it and be more likely to help you again. Come on over to our LinkedIn group to get started and network with people in your desired industry.