wonder why most jobs are filled without the use of classified ads?
Because the unpublished job market is filtered through referrals from
trusted contacts, not ads. The bottom line is, people do business with
and hire people they know or who come highly recommended. There are
many factors to consider when attempting to enhance your networking
effectiveness, so we have compiled some important tips to help you
1. HELP WANTED ADS VS. NETWORKING
The advertised job market is frustrating, slow and troublesome for both
employer and applicant. For the applicant, it means major competition;
particularly for entry-level positions. For the more experienced or specialized
worker, the advertised job market may barely exist. The employer's network
is faster, cheaper and more effective than advertising, so networking
now may help jumpstart your employment future.
2. FISH IN THE RIGHT POND
Fact: 80% of all positions are filled without ever being advertised.
These positions are filled by and/or created for candidates who come
to an employer's attention through employee recommendations, referrals
from trusted associates, recruiters, and/or direct contact with the candidate.
Consequently, if 80% of the fish are in the networking pond, you should
be fishing there, while simultaneously developing your networking strengths.
BE THE BUYER
It's human nature; we tend to gravitate towards people, products and
services that come highly recommended. This applies to everyone, especially
employers. Continually put yourself in the shoes of the person making
the decisions, i.e., the buyer/employer. You will be more successful
if you look at the hiring process from the other side of the desk.
Successful hidden job market candidates are often able to connect with
the employer's network through "pre-recommendation" by someone
the employer trusts. Using your contacts to connect with the employer's
contacts is the key to the hidden/unadvertised jobs. Networking develops
relationships with people, and employers are people you need to establish
EXPAND YOUR CIRCLE
If you are seeking employment, challenge yourself to attend networking
events and become more social. What do you have to lose? Get to know
new people in your industry. You never know who may be your next employer
or referral. Strong self-presentation and communication skills often
play a key role in influencing employers hiring decisions. Make a commitment
to establish at least one new contact a day, and consistently follow-up
TALK TO STRANGERS
When attending a networking meeting, dinner, or presentation don't waste
time chatting with your close friends or co-workers. You can talk to
them anytime, but you may not have another chance to make a key introduction
to a potential employer. If you have an opportunity to circulate and
network, take advantage of it!
LOCATE THE HIDDEN JOB MARKET
At hundreds of companies across America, jobs become available when people
retire, leave for better jobs, relocate with their spouses, transfer,
or fall ill. These vacancies may go unadvertised for a period of time
because hiring managers prefer to fill them without launching a full-scale
search. The best jobs are available at this stage and there is less competition.
How do you land them? Good timing, research, persistence, and expanding
BECOME "TOP OF MIND"
Accept the fact that people who network and are "known" in
their industry get the jobs, but they aren't necessarily the most educated,
talented, or qualified. Again, employers prefer to deal with something
familiar or referred, rather than take a chance on the unknown. Get your
name out there to generate awareness.
There are 100's or 1000's of people just like you offering similar talents
to employers. Your challenge is to make employers remember you when the
need arises. Don't be afraid to market yourself a little differently.
This could be as simple as a unique business card or a dynamic personal
website. Work at becoming a known entity rather than a piece of paper.
SEEK ADVICE, NOT A JOB
Successful individuals and employers in your industry are a great source
for advice and referrals. It makes them feel important and special, and
expands your network in the process. But key executives are short on
time, so try to learn as much as possible about the person you are conversing
with by asking questions, obtaining their business card, and taking notes.
Don't be overly assertive and apply job pressures; your network contact
may withdraw because no one wants to be put on the spot or give negative
news. If there is a job fit, let them broach the subject, not you.
PREPARE A 30-SECOND INTRODUCTION
People love to talk about themselves, so help them by posing good questions.
The more you know about your contact, the more strategic and engaging
your answers can be when it's your turn to share. Never volunteer your
experiences and achievements until asked. When you are asked about your
background/experience, your response should be concise; no longer than
30-seconds. Don't elaborate on the details at a networking meeting unless
There is no better way to network than volunteering for a position of
leadership in an organization or society. An organization's leaders have
a distinct networking advantage, as they are active and visible to others.
They get more exposure, meet more people from other organizations, and
often get additional exposure by having their name in "print" distributions
via newsletters, web site listings, and other marketing vehicles.
DON'T GET COMPLACENT
If you have a permanent job, don't get too comfortable. Job security
is at an all time low, so you still need to be networking. Individuals
have minimal control of corporate downsizing, rightsizing, mergers, acquisitions,
and takeovers, but they do have total control of their network and relationship
DEVELOP A CONSCISE RESUME
No one gets a job from a resume alone, especially not a lengthy, long-winded
one. Employers only have about 5 seconds to preview resumes; so if they
are not concise, they won't get read. People who network know that jobs
come after a face to face interview, and thus limit their resumes to
a one-page summary of their talents. Details and dates, if necessary,
are to be discussed at the job interview.
THE INTERNET IS YOUR FRIEND
You see them everywhere; web addresses on TV, business cards, letterhead,
newspapers, magazines and company brochures. Having a URL and at the
very least an e-mail account gives you a distinct advantage over the
competition. The web is a powerful and cost effective communication tool;
so if you are not connected, get connected.
Don't leave home without business cards. Your card can be your silent
salesman, reminding people of you at a later time. Your business card
is an excellent place to list your phone number, fax number, pager number,
e-mail address, and personal web site address. You want to make it convenient
for people to reach you; and business cards are the most simple, cost-effective
sales tool you can have.