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“I’m Not Asking for a Job.”

Yes, you are. But not really.

➔ We heard a job seeker recently exclaim, “I’ll talk to anyone!” This is not a bad approach. In fact, it’s one that we totally support.

It’s true. Talk to anyone. Even if they don’t have a job, they very possibly may know of someone who does have a job or they may point you in the right direction where a job is that pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.

Talk is Cheap

Considering the huge percentage of jobs that are found through networking (one recruiter told us recently that the proportion of jobs found through networking is around 80 percent) talking to people may be the most valuable way to spend your job-search time. Factor in the cost associated with talking to people and what could be more economical?

But what about people you don’t know and don’t have direct access to? How do you get on their radar screen? You might simply call them up (or reach out via email) and ask them. You might be shocked as to what they might say.

But how do you ensure that you can get a positive response from them when you call and ask about a job? It’s very easy for someone in that position to brush you off by saying, “I don’t have any jobs and I don’t know anyone who does.” Now all you have to show for your efforts is rejection and dejection.

A better approach would be to not ask for a job. But isn’t your intention to ask for and/or to find a job? Yes it is. But you don’t have to club them over the head with it. Look back to our headline. “I’m Not Asking for a Job.” Come right out and say that. You’ll find that often they’ll shed that defensive approach and begin a conversation.

And, in the end, that’s what you want. That conversation may lead to a job, to another new contact (who may have a job), or somewhere else you can’t even imagine.

But aren’t you just lying to them? No. Sure you want a job, but in this case you’re seeking a conversation… which can lead to a firmer contact or connection… which can result in a job.


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