Need to start networking? I write often about the need to surround yourself with positive, supportive people during a stressful period of job transition. Connecting with family and friends regularly lifts your spirits and reminds your network to keep an eye out for you. It can also provide you with important insider information about the job market in your local community.
I recently had lunch with a friend whose husband works for a Fortune 200 company in our city. As we were catching up, I casually asked her, “How's Chris's new job going?" My friend opened up about how stressful her husband's job had become, and told me his company was currently under a hiring freeze. Now, the day we had this conversation, this very company had hundreds of open jobs listed on its website. Their online application system would easily take each candidate at least 30 minutes to complete. Imagine how those applicants would have felt if they had known that no one would be reviewing their applications! Your friends offer an invaluable perspective into your local economy and job market. A simple statement such as, “John just got a job over at XYZ," can clue you in to companies hiring again. Many times our friends don't realize the greater economic ramifications of the events they see going on around them, but those of you who are searching for any sign of economic opportunity will be able to see the broader patterns. Start networking now! This post was originally published at an earlier date.