The saying your network is your net worth is possible to apply in your career ambitions. Here are five ways to use your contacts to land your next job.
Networking is one of the crucial stepping stones that can lead you to either your next job or business opportunity. However, not every contact on your phone book or business cards you collected over the years might transform into a meaningful relationship, but from personal experience, it might be a great reference for someone who might need your help to kick-start their career goals. Here are five tips I have used to help grow my career through my phone book:
Follow up after you meet: Sometimes, after introducing ourselves at networking events, talking about anything, and exchanging contacts, we make the mistake of not following up. Take the lead as a follow-up email or meeting is a great way to start building an amicable relationship with industry colleagues. Also, follow them on social media and connect with them on LinkedIn.
Get to know them: While some people want to get to the chase, it could backfire if your contacts feel like they are being used. Take the time to get to know them, find out what their interests are, when their birthdays are or anything that makes them feel heard and remembered by reaching out to them (social media can help with these things). Let them know you are thinking of them, but don’t crowd their space.
Give as much as you expect to receive: Believe it or not, you might have the best resources to help your contacts. It might be your skills, your other contacts, or even your time. Find out how you can add value to the relationship by helping where you can.
READ MORE: An Introvert’s Guide To Networking
Start communicating your needs: After a few weeks or months of forming relationships, starting engaging with your contacts on your career goals. Tell them where you are, what you want to achieve, and if they know companies that are currently hiring. Make it gradual, and with time and if they can, they will refer you to the right people who can help you land your next job. Trust me, it works. Almost all the jobs I had were through my contacts.
Nurture your relationships: While forming new relationships is important, don’t forget to nurture the contacts you already have. Send an email or text them every once in a while to find out how they are doing and that you are thinking about them. Thank them for the contribution they have made to your career and offer help where you can.
Your next job or business deal can be a phone call or email away. Nurture your relationships and make networking work for you as best as you can.