We all need each other. – Leo Buscaglia
This is a fact. There is no way we can live this life alone and as much as we would like not to ever seek anyone’s help, there is something humbling about it, and in fact, if done right, it can uplift us as we connect with the human side of us and others.
I personally was never a fan of “networking” in the sense that it involves attending receptions, cocktails, etc… and I also did not like the idea of organised networking either as it forces people to think about what they can give to others and what others can give back, i.e. focuses on the exchange as opposed to real connection which is often what gets people together to begin with.
As always, I looked within and around me and I realized something fundamental about networking during a job search, and that is that it was absolutely necessary.
Thinking, ironic, right?
Elaborating on this, I see networking as a result of years of experience in meeting and connecting with people be it in University, in companies we work for, in companies with work with and our social network including family and friends. We each have at least 100 people who we have connected with, or let us say, on average, we meet at least 5 people some of whom are our family members. That is the network I am referring to.
Then comes the key question then, what does this network have to do with networking and the job search?
They are a key source of jobs and client opportunities … with the caveat of two questions that you have to ask yourself:
- Do you consider them professionally successful? Are they working in an industry that is similar to or conducive to or with connections to the one you would like to work in?
- Are they humble? Are they non-judgmental and open? Are they givers?
If the answer to these two questions is yes, then they are a potential source of opportunities that you should not ignore as long as you are ready to answer two questions,
- What have you been doing?
- What do you want to do and why now?
Go ahead … reach out … I know it is uncomfortable, but be genuine, be yourself and remember, we are where we are because of each other.
It doesn’t matter if you are unemployed … a recent grad … retired and want to return to employment or grow your business …
Today you need others, tomorrow, others will need you.
Be committed to that.
Image courtesy of hin255 at FreeDigitalPhotos.net