More than 80% of job openings are filled through networking.
How you think about networking informs how you feel about networking. If you think networking is just about trying to get a job in a sneaky way, then it's going to feel slimy.
If you think about networking as asking for advice or information about getting from point A to point B, then it feels more natural, something you're already familiar with doing. The point of networking is to gather information and to get on people's radar for when jobs do become available.
Build Your Network
Let people you know that you are actively job searching or exploring areas of interest.
Be specific about what you are looking for so that people can best guide you.
Take on a volunteer or leadership position.
Use the Western alumni search tool on Linkedin.
Talk to family, friends, faculty, and classmates.
How to Network Successfully
Talk to as many people as possible - it only makes sense that you would spend 80% of your job search time on networking as that’s where 80% of the jobs exist.
- Start networking before you think you need to
- Create a contact list of at minimum 10 people
- Schedule time in your calendar to make contact with those on your list (see sample Linkedin , email , or phone messages)
- Setup informational interviews and be ready to talk about yourself, if asked, by developing your elevator pitch
- Follow-up with a thank you and follow through with advice, feedback, and/or favours
Be a good listener and listen more than you speak
Maintain eye contact and smile
Be considerate of their time and know the questions you want to ask
Do not ask for a job or if they know anyone hiring
Never dismiss anyone as unimportant or unhelpful
The hidden job market exists because employers simply don’t need to post every position that becomes available. They can fill these positions in a much more cost-effective and efficient way – through networking.
So You Think You Can't Network?
Watch and learn from Western’s Craig Ingram how you can make networking more enjoyable by tailoring the process to your natural strengths and comfort level. Develop a better understanding of alternatives to the archetypal networking event and specific ways to increase your networking effectiveness.