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2010-01-06 9:05 PM

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Supersonicus Idioticus
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Thunder Bay, ON
Subject: So how do I use this "networking" thing to find a job?
I've been looking for work for 3 months, unsuccessfully. I read everywhere that networking is many times more effective than job post searching. I thought I was networking, but gauging on how much face time I have had with people, I'm doing something wrong.

I have read (from the parachute book) that I should find a place I want to work, ask my contacts if they know anyone in that place, then ask to arrange a meeting. What puzzles me is the audacity they expect me to have in asking my not-so-well known contacts if they know people. I am not going to ask some client I met for 2 hours if they know about a company. The book suggests to ask ALL my contacts. Aren't I out of place in asking my barber if they know about a telecom company? And what if I find a second, or eighth company I want to work for. Wouldn't 8 emails to my contacts be excessive???

Am I going about the process all wrong?

Since BT loves to have more background information, I'm an electrical engineering graduate with three years of experience, 2 of it in medical devices, 1 in computer hardware. I'm amazing with electronics and wireless projects.

Thanks all!


2010-01-06 9:35 PM
in reply to: #2599323

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Master
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Subject: RE: So how do I use this "networking" thing to find a job?
I don't usually read or respond to My Cup of Joe, but I have been in your position and most likely will be in about 6 months or so.

You need to tell everyone you know that you are looking for a job.  This is the time to humble yourself and get the word out.  Don't hound or pester people, but a quick phone call just to let them know will help with your network.  As long as you impressed a client, talk to them, even if you only met with them for a short time.  Tell former colleagues, family and friends.  You may even want to set up a Linked In site and start contacting everyone you know from college and heck even high school days.  Contact your college professors and counselors if you had any relationship with them.

There is something like 6.8 people applying for every job out there and competition is fierce.  The more you get your name out there, the better.

Hang in there, put on a positive countenance when in person AND on the phone, and you will find something.  One thing that is always happening is people leave jobs and that creates openings. We have an aging workforce and many are taking retirement just to get out of the race.  That will pave the way for younger professionals like yourself!

Chin up and find something to do each day to deal with the stress.  Swim, bike, and run come to mind!
2010-01-06 9:48 PM
in reply to: #2599323

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Master
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St. Louis
Subject: RE: So how do I use this "networking" thing to find a job?
x2, what Greg said.

Are you in the Cleveland area?  If so, is that where you are looking to stay?  If so, I'll ping the Engineering Director in our Cleveland office and see if he has any openings.

You just networked on BT!
2010-01-07 12:24 AM
in reply to: #2599323

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Supersonicus Idioticus
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Thunder Bay, ON
Subject: RE: So how do I use this "networking" thing to find a job?
I actually have a job lead in Columbus... I could take it... but it's Columbus. No, I'm in Toronto. Would like to get out.

I pretty much have told everyone I know I've been laid off. The question is now whether I am in the right to bother them about what they know about company X, then Y, then Z, then whatever letter comes after Z.
2010-01-07 2:00 AM
in reply to: #2599323

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Elite
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DC Metro, slowly working my way to NC
Subject: RE: So how do I use this "networking" thing to find a job?

From all I have seen/read/heard in the past 18 months, + personal experience...

"Professional Networking" is nice and sometimes works.  Networking through friends and family who actually KNOW you is much more effective - because no one wants to refer a friend/family member who is a total loser.

So, continue networking, but do it through people who really know you and could genuinely lose credibility should you turn out to be "that person that no one really wants to hire after all."  And if you're someone they really would like to be associated with - you should get some really good referrals out of it.

2010-01-07 6:57 AM
in reply to: #2599323

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Subject: RE: So how do I use this "networking" thing to find a job?
So Fresh So Clean - 2010-01-06 10:05 PM I've been looking for work for 3 months, unsuccessfully. I read everywhere that networking is many times more effective than job post searching. I thought I was networking, but gauging on how much face time I have had with people, I'm doing something wrong. I have read (from the parachute book) that I should find a place I want to work, ask my contacts if they know anyone in that place, then ask to arrange a meeting. What puzzles me is the audacity they expect me to have in asking my not-so-well known contacts if they know people. I am not going to ask some client I met for 2 hours if they know about a company. The book suggests to ask ALL my contacts. Aren't I out of place in asking my barber if they know about a telecom company? And what if I find a second, or eighth company I want to work for. Wouldn't 8 emails to my contacts be excessive??? Am I going about the process all wrong? Since BT loves to have more background information, I'm an electrical engineering graduate with three years of experience, 2 of it in medical devices, 1 in computer hardware. I'm amazing with electronics and wireless projects. Thanks all!


If you want to get a job, people have to know you're looking for a job.  Former, impressed clients, bosses, supervisors and coworkers are the best.  They know you (even if for two hours) and will enthusiasticly recommend you if they can.  Even that guy you only met him for two hours:  Call him up and remind him who you are, let him know you're looking for a job at companies like X, Y and Z.  (Keep the number of contacts down by being prepared ahead of time.)  Then ask him if he knows anyone there or at similar companies.  It will work, not everytime, but you'll get some contact names.  Then its just calling the name given and saying "John Doe recommended talking to you."  The economy stinks, people will sympathize with you and you might get a secondary referral out of this.  Make sure to thank your original reference - it will make him feel good and might impell him to talk to the person he referred you to.

The thing a lot of people don't get (and that I don't do) is that you should ALWAYS be networking.  Call past clients and contacts and check up on them.  Facebook friends, Linked In business associates.  Talk to them about events relevant to thier careers - even if its really short.  Stay in contact, even if its only once every 3 or 4 months and then when you need something, it won't seem or feel weird to ask.

Good luck - its hard to do for some people, but its "time in the saddle" the more you practice it, the better you'll be.


2010-01-07 8:46 AM
in reply to: #2599323

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Champion
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Subject: RE: So how do I use this "networking" thing to find a job?
Create and use your LinkedIn profile.  Connect to everyone you know.  Then look at the job listings on LinkedIn.  The best part is it shows you if you are linked to a person at that company (or even the person who posted the job).  Being able to contact them directly is invaluable.

Today is about differentiation yourself.  If you think you can just submit resumes to job board postings you are playing craps.  You might get lucky but more likely you are wasting your time. 

This is coming from the employer perspective (engineering firm, sorry not medical or wireless).  When I need employees I don't look on Monster or CareerBuilder.  I talk to people I know to see who they would recommend, partly via LinkedIn)

2010-01-07 10:23 AM
in reply to: #2599323

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Subject: RE: So how do I use this "networking" thing to find a job?

A couple of thoughts. Someone said earlier that you need to be constantly 'working' your network - that means that when you need help the call/email doesn't come completely out of the blue. I often use the New Year as a an excuse to reach out to people I haven't been in touch with for a while just to see how they're doing etc. I also keep track of every birthday I know and send a quick note on birthday's also. Second, what type of help you ask for may depend on how well you really know someone and how well they know you - I will not recommend someone for a job if I don't know them (or their skills) well enough to do so but I will get their resume to the right person if I'm able to do so.

2010-01-07 1:06 PM
in reply to: #2599897

Subject: RE: So how do I use this "networking" thing to find a job?

TriRSquared - 2010-01-07 9:46 AM

Today is about differentiation yourself.  If you think you can just submit resumes to job board postings you are playing craps.  You might get lucky but more likely you are wasting your time. 

On the searching end, the mass job boards are a good catch-all just to see what companies are actually hiring. Then if you see something you like, go find that posting on their website, and while you're there, check out what else they might have posted. It's one way to filter and search, but yeah, posting your resume on there is pretty much a load. No one is going to see it or call you, etc. At least not any place you'd actually want to work (ie, lots of "work from home!" scams troll those boards for resumes).

Linkedin has a really good cache of job postings as well, even if you're not searching through the people you know. I found about 6 new job postings on there yesterday that I added to my list of applications to do this weekend.

But out of the couple dozen jobs I've applied to so far, I've had only one interview, and I'm pretty sure it was because I checked the "employee referral" box on the application - a gal on my tri team alerted me to the posting because, as was mentioned above, I hit the team's listserv just saying "I'm looking for a job"- and a bunch of people requested that I give them my resume, or told me "oh, xyz company is hiring".

As a final thought, these times may call for desperate measures. I'm going to do what I can to find something I actually want, but if I have to, I'm not entirely above taking something that is "below" my ability. But it's a job, and I think many people understand the hardships others are in right now, so if you had one blip on your resume that's less than impressive, you could probably explain it away easily.

Anyway, just my experiences with this process so far. I still have a job, but it was reduced to part time as of the 1st of the year, and I've lost my benefits and half my salary, so I'm in basically the same boat (and have already gotten laid off once, in early 2008).

2010-01-07 1:21 PM
in reply to: #2599323

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Atlanta, Georgia
Subject: RE: So how do I use this "networking" thing to find a job?
Another nudge for creating a profile in LinkedIn (if you haven't already).

I was contacted a few weeks ago by a recruiter who found me solely through LinkedIn. Expand your profile so anyone can see it. No point in 'hiding' the information... a few people I knew were like "oh! maybe I should let people see my profile!" and they are looking for jobs.

The company I currently work for is looking into all of the social networking sites (including Facebook) for recruiting.

 

Edited by lisac957 2010-01-07 1:21 PM
2010-01-07 1:47 PM
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Subject: RE: So how do I use this "networking" thing to find a job?

lisac957 - 2010-01-07 10:21 AM Another nudge for creating a profile in LinkedIn (if you haven't already).

I was contacted a few weeks ago by a recruiter who found me solely through LinkedIn. Expand your profile so anyone can see it. No point in 'hiding' the information... a few people I knew were like "oh! maybe I should let people see my profile!" and they are looking for jobs.

The company I currently work for is looking into all of the social networking sites (including Facebook) for recruiting.

 

 

And contacting people through the LinkedIn network really does work - it actully allows you to get put in touch with a friend of a friend of a friend.



Edited by mjr66 2010-01-07 1:47 PM


2010-01-07 6:24 PM
in reply to: #2599323

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Subject: RE: So how do I use this "networking" thing to find a job?
Most of my social networking for jobs was internal (with in the company) with only a little external stuff. But it works if you just make contacts and let people know what you are looking for. Don't be nosy or pushy. I was just curt and honest about it all and before I knew it I went from an entry level position at one place to a mid level spot (skipping many pay grades) in a similar area/company. Some people think that Talk is cheap but in reality that did wonders for me.  

best of luck!
2010-01-07 7:26 PM
in reply to: #2599323

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Supersonicus Idioticus
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Thunder Bay, ON
Subject: RE: So how do I use this "networking" thing to find a job?
Thanks everyone for your input!!! It's hard to tell the true information from the information given to me by people who are paid to do so.

I already have a LinkedIn account, and growing steadily.
http://ca.linkedin.com/in/gregtogtema if you want to critique it.

Perhaps the job postings are much better in the USA, because the only job leads I have gathered from LinkedIn were there. You are right, Lisa, I have been contacted too, but I do not want to move to Silicon Valley.

Finally, I will say thanks for giving me the confidence to contact friends of friends of friends on LinkedIn. I personally thought they would not want to be bothered.

Good luck to all of those who are job hunting!
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