5 Networking Tips Every Job Seeker Needs

Whether you love networking or hate it, it’s still the #1 way to find a job. When someone says they heard about a job through so-and-so, or that ‘my job just fell into my lap,’ you know it happened through networking. If you’re in the job search, you need to know how to do this right so it exponentially boosts your opportunities. Related: 7 Tips For Nailing Networking

Here Are 5 Essential Networking Tips Every Job Seeker Needs To Know Now:

1. Realize That Your Network Is Bigger Than You Think

A good, effective network isn’t just the people you work with or used to work with—it’s everyone you know. Past co-workers and bosses are great, but there’s a lot of potential in the people your spouse works with, your friends, your family, co-workers of your family and friends, parents of your child’s friends, your child’s teachers or coaches, your doctor, your accountant, or anyone you see regularly. I personally know one man who got a job through his barista (another coffee-loving customer happened to be looking for someone and she introduced them) and a woman who got a job through another mom at her son’s school PTO. The point is, you never know where that job lead may come from, so explore ALL of your options.

2. Contact Your Current Network Regularly (Even When You Don’t Need To)

The best way to keep a network ‘fresh,’ so that you can tap into it when you need it is to feed it when you don’t need it. One great way to do this is every 3-6 months, send an email or a direct Facebook or LinkedIn message to everyone you know. You can do this as a big project, or set it up to do a few every day. The point is to touch those contacts on a regular basis. You don’t have to have a reason, or say anything profound—just say hi. Let them know what you’re doing. Send them something they may be interested in, like a link to an article or a book recommendation. Let them know that if they need anything, you are ready to assist. This is the basis for the healthiest kind of network—the give and take. You scratch their back, and they’ll scratch yours.

3. Always Be Growing Your Network

When you meet people at work events, get their email or LinkedIn URL and add them to your routine. As you join LinkedIn groups, participate in discussions and make thoughtful comments as a first step toward asking them to connect with you.

4. Offer Help Whenever You Can

Helping others where you can builds up a lot of goodwill that you can draw on when you need it. Plus, if you’ve helped someone, it can make you a lot more comfortable when it’s time to ask for that help. Make a point of sending others interesting news or article links (as discussed above), and let them know that if there’s anything you can help them with, you’d be happy to.

5. Be Honest With Your Network

People can’t help you if you don’t ask. If you’re job searching, tell everyone in your network so they know to keep an eye out for you. We all like to help others if we can, especially if it’s as easy as letting you know about a job opening or giving you someone’s name to contact. Let them help you. Learn how to network like a pro! Read Networking Effectively: How to Build Your Network for Career Success, available on Amazon. This post was originally published at an earlier date.

Related Posts

How To Manage Without Being Mean (Is It Possible To Not Be Pushy?) 5 Things To Consider Before You Take That Management Job #1 Key To Becoming An Effective Leader

About the author

Career Coach - Peggy McKee is an expert resource and a dedicated advocate for job seekers. Known as the Sales Recruiter from Career Confidential, her years of experience as a nationally-known recruiter for sales and marketing jobs give her a unique perspective and advantage in developing the tools and strategies that help job seekers stand head and shoulders above the competition. Peggy has been named #1 on the list of the Top 25 Most Influential Online Recruiters by HR Examiner, and has been quoted in articles from CNN, CAP TODAY, Yahoo! HotJobs, and the Denver Examiner. Disclosure: This post is sponsored by a CAREEREALISM-approved expert. You can learn more about expert posts here. Photo Credit: Shutterstock

In our new YouTube series, "Well This Happened" it's your turn to be the career coach! What would you do if you asked a coworker when the baby was due and she responded with, "I'm not pregnant." Watch the video and cast your vote b posting a comment on Youtube. We'll select one person from the correct answers at random to win free membership to the Work It Daily program. Good luck!

SHOW MORE Show less

If you've ever wondered what a Work It Daily (WID) membership could do for you, a letter we got this week provides a powerful example...

SHOW MORE Show less

There are 3 things hiring managers are trying to initially assess about you in the job interview. This video walks you through what they are looking for and offers insights into the right information to give them. Be sure to check out our free resources mentioned in the video too. They are:

SHOW MORE Show less

Last week during my Office Hours on Youtube, a client asked about how to deal with a workplace bully. After spending many years in corporate HR, I flipped to the other side and became a career therapist. So, I've seen both sides of this situation in the workplace. In this video, I discuss why people struggle to deal with bullies and what you can do to change the situation instantly.

This week, I did something that truly scared me. I sent an email to over 120,000 Work It Daily newsletter subscribers and asked them to answer the question, "What do we do?"

SHOW MORE Show less

A market correction is going to happen. When it does, layoffs will follow. I've been in the HR and recruiting industry for over two decades and have seen three recessions of varying sizes. In the video above, I explain how to tell when a recession is coming and what that means to you and your career. While many people will skip watching this. Or, will watch it and do nothing. I hope YOU are the smart, savvy professional who sees how important it is to prepare for unexpected, unwelcomed career circumstances.

SHOW MORE Show less

In this video, you'll learn how to tell if your career is plateauing due to the Executive Blues. You'll also learn what you can do to fix the problem and get your "executive energy" back so you can keep your career on track and set goals to reach new heights of success!

Want to watch the full video tutorial by J.T.?

CLICK HERE to get access!