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Working the Net

Sometimes it’s the little things that count most

We recently heard a recruiter state that 78 percent of your job search time should networking. That seems to follow with the estimate that more than 80 percent of job placements involve (in one way, shape or form) networking.

Of course, if you’ve been paying attention at all, you should already know this. (Or, at least, be familiar with it.)

There are some networking nuggets that may help

Let’s start with the informational interview – which should be a major component of any job seekers networking arsenal. This is especially important now that the Covid noose seems to be loosening from around our necks, and it appears that more and more people are willing to meet face-to-face (although this can apply to a virtual meeting as well.)

When you approach someone about an informational interview, keep in mind that they have a job and can’t afford to devote too much of any day to your job search. Therefore, when you suggest meeting, be fairly specific about how much of a time commitment you’re expecting from them. For example, promise to keep the meeting to no more than 15-20 minutes. And then stick to it. Be mindful of the other person’s time.

Without coming across as too rigid, mentally plan for 1-2 minutes of introduction and 1-2 minutes of closing and/or confirming any follow up. The rest of your time should be spent on your “networking.”

Regardless of how it goes or what comes from it, be certain to always follow up with your contacts and express your gratitude for their time and interest. Although hand-written notes still make an impact, in this, the 21st Century, texting or emailing your thanks is acceptable.

Your mother wasn’t far off the mark when she said that “thank you” are the most important words in the English (or any) language.


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