Networking Essentials

You may have heard the expression, “it’s not what you now, but who you now that matters.” This can be especially true when searching for new employment. Even though knowledge is power, you must still be able to take that knowledge and sell yourself to your potential employer.

When looking for your dream job, sending out a search party is always smarter than searching on your own. It is always a good idea to start by making a list of your initial contacts. Here are some ideas for who you might want to include:

Initial Contacts: People You Know

Family, friends, and associates can be your greatest networking contacts in searching for a job. It is necessary to rank these people according to their ability in helping you out. Keep in mind that your contact should be someone that works at the company or that knows someone important at the company. It is also beneficial to find out if he/she is in good standing with the person they know.

The list below will give you some ideas for your initial contacts:

  • Co-workers - current and former
  • Employers - current and former
  • Business club members and executives
  • Politicians, Town Council Members
  • Suppliers
  • College alumni
  • Teachers - including college professors and advisors
  • Social acquaintances - from clubs and organizations
  • Neighbours - current and former
  • Family contacts
  • Relatives

Casting a Wider Net: True Networking

To build your network beyond your initial contacts, consider attending industry-related events or job fairs; attending community events or joining community organizations; and joining social networking websites, such as LinkedIn or BranchOut.