Your personal network is one of the biggest and best sources for job leads.
It consists of people who already know you, like you, and know your capabilities.
Where better to find a job?
Many people who decide to work their network do it without a plan. They contact people haphazardly.
That can work, but you’re chances are you’re leaving out potentially helpful contacts.
The best way to work your network for potential job leads is to do it systematically, this way you will not miss anyone who could eventually lead you to an great position.
Here’s how to work your network for job leads.
Timeline All Your Past Work
Write down every single job or professional arrangement you’ve had in the last 5 years.
Include one-off projects like arranging a seminar or giving a talk.
Don’t forget every single customer you’ve worked with.
Then write down the names of every single person you can remember in each and every one of your past jobs.
This whole process will probably take a few days.
Even after you’ve finished writing down everyone you can think of, you’ll likely remember people who you missed.
Once you have the list complete, start contacting the people who you think would most likely be helpful.
Start with the people you have the strongest connection with.
Don’t underestimate the ability of lower level employees to help you out.
An administrative assistant takes phone calls from high level executives all day.
Rather than excluding people based on rank, contact the people who are most likely to want to help you first.
Using Your Social Networking Contacts
Your Facebook, and Google+ contacts are a goldmine when it comes to working your network.
View all your friends and go through all of them one by one, asking yourself if there’s any chance they could help you find a job.
Also ask yourself how likely they are to want to help you out.
Yes, individually going through all 200 – 1,000+ of your friends is going to take time and concentration.
But it’s a much better use of your time than going through job boards, because the people in your social network already know and like you.
Don’t underestimate your network, it is an excellent source for job leads.
Your network can help you meet the people you need to meet and get the job you really want to get.
Most people get a position because of someone they know.
Chances are you are more connected than you realize. Most likely you are one or two people away from your next position.
Let’s hear how you have used your network to find job leads?
Let me know in the comments, and thanks for reading!
PS: Remember to write a quick thank you note to the people who you have contacted. It shows your appreciation and the recipient will be happy to help you next time.