Home » Professional networking

Professional networking

  • Are you sick and tired of depending on other people for your career success? Good! The only person in charge of your success is you.

    If you’re feeling trapped by a job you hate, a bad boss, insulting pay, or all of the above, it’s time you take ownership of your career. But where do you start?

    Here are three things you can do to start taking control of your career today:

    Take Inventory Of Your Skill Sets

    What are you known for? What are your best skills? What accomplishments are you most proud of? What are your best qualities?

    Take some time to list your best skill sets, and how you use those skill sets to add value to a company. Think of all the quantifiable examples of the times your skills have helped previous employers and other examples of your skill sets standing out from everyone else’s.

    Organizing all of this information will help you build your personal brand and organize how you want to market yourself as a business-of-one to employers.

    Start Being Proactive In Your Career

    A young professional has a career conversation with her boss

    If you want to take ownership of your career, you need to stop being reactive and start being proactive. Reactive activities include but aren’t limited to the following: waiting for your boss to give you a promotion, waiting for recruiters to reach out to you with new opportunities, or waiting for employers to email you back about your resume.

    Notice that all of these “job search activities” started with the word “waiting.” Newsflash: Waiting doesn’t get results. Taking action does.

    Instead, set up a meeting with your boss to discuss advancement opportunities or make a bucket list of companies that you want to work at, and then reach out to employees at those companies to connect, and maybe even set up informational interviews.

    It’s also important to submit your cover letter and resume to an actual person when applying for a job, and following up with that hiring staff.

    Build Your Professional Network

    Man on phone and laptop builds his professional network

    The old saying, “It’s who you know,” has never rung more true. Get by with a little help from your career friends! Focus your efforts on building your professional network. Meet new people within your industry and bucket list companies. Start conversations and build relationships with them.

    Even if you’re not ready to find a new job or change careers yet, having these people in the wings as references, mentors, and professional contacts will help you tremendously. They can provide tips and insight, act as a sounding board for ideas, and even hook you up with a job. Just make sure you help them out in return!

    Step Out Of Your Comfort Zone

    Young happy professional stands out in the job market by stepping out of her comfort zone

    Part of your new, proactive approach is to step out of your comfort zone. Many people hold themselves back solely because they are afraid of what people might think. But remember, nothing will change if you don’t!

    Make an effort to put yourself out there and meet new people. Set up informational interviews with like-minded professionals, strike up a conversation with someone at a conference, and attend in-person or virtual networking events.

    If you’re ready to achieve career success, take ownership of your career today by following the tips above. What is your business-of-one capable of?

    Need more help with your career?

    Become a member to learn how to UNLEASH your true potential to get what you want from work!

    This article was originally published at an earlier date.

    0 FacebookTwitterPinterestEmail
  • When there’s a company you really want to work for and you’ve applied and applied and you don’t get any results, the first thing I ask is how many informational interviews have you done with people who work at this company?

    Informational interviews are not job interviews. They are interviews where you are asking that person for guidance or coaching by saying things like…

    • Can you tell me how you got your job?
    • What do you think it took to stand out?
    • What do you think it takes to be successful at the company?
    • What would you advise me to do to better prepare myself for job interviews?

    You’re not asking them to refer you to the hiring manager or help you get the job. You’re asking them to coach you on being the best version of yourself so that you can be a standout candidate to get the job yourself.

    Informational Interviewing Tips

    At the end of each informational interview, say, “This was really helpful. Could you introduce me or recommend one person at this company that you think I could also learn a lot from?” What happens is the person always recommends one person, and that’s how you get your next informational interview. And you do that over and over and over again.

    Now why is this important? Well, they are going to start to give you all the information you need to help you understand what you have to do to stand out and get hired. Also, you’re building up your networking connections so that when a recruiter comes across your LinkedIn profile and sees that you’re connected to all these people, it increases the chances that you’ll actually get a job interview.

    Plus, when you’re in the job interview, you can say, “I’ve had the pleasure of talking with so-and-so who works at your company, and they shared (blank),” or “I talked to so-and-so and they told me (blank).” This shows that you are connected to these people and you’ve listened to what they’ve said, and this can be one of the best ways to get a job with a company you love.

    Let me give you a real-life example. I actually coached a young woman on this. She was a senior in college, and she wanted to work for a very well-known sports company. And so we started this process. We got her her first informational interview, and then she got another one and another one and another one. She graduated from college, applied for jobs, and didn’t get any job offers. Then, out of the blue, while she was home, she got a call and it was from a manager at the sports company she’d never met. And this person said, “Hey, I’d like to interview you over the phone. I had a candidate lined up for a job and the candidate dropped out. I need somebody to start ASAP. So I sent a message out to all the managers saying, ‘I need somebody with these skills ASAP. Can you think of anyone?’ And three different managers messaged me back and recommended you. You clearly made an impression when you were talking to all these people. So I want to interview you.” And that’s how she got a job with them.

    Informational interviewing is so effective when you’re trying to get into a dream employer. At Work It DAILY, we teach the framework for informational interviewing. It is an entire module that is part of our interview prep course. We take you through the interview process from the eyes of the hiring manager so that we can prepare you to do the right things before the interview, during the interview, after the interview, and throughout the whole process. And part of that is also knowing how to do informational interviewing.

    If you would like access to our interview prep course, become a Work It DAILY member today. Sign up for our 7-day FREE trial and see how easy it is to get the results you want and deserve.

    Good luck, and go get ’em!

    0 FacebookTwitterPinterestEmail
  • You just got a new LinkedIn connection—woo-hoo! Okay, now what? How can you start building your professional relationship with this person so you add value to each other’s network?

    Here are some tips for getting a dialogue started with new LinkedIn connections…

    1. Start With Your Subject Line

    If you’re having trouble thinking of what to say in your initial message to your new LinkedIn connection, start with your subject line and then elaborate.

    You can say something as simple as “Thanks for connecting!” or even “It’s great to meet you!” If you enjoyed an article they wrote or shared, you can say something like, “Loved your article!” or “Thanks for sharing your insight!”

    If you met your new LinkedIn connection in person at a networking event, mention something specific like, “It was great to meet you yesterday at the ABC Event!” or “Wanted to continue our conversation from yesterday.”

    2. Introduce (Or Reintroduce) Yourself

    via GIPHY

    Send your new connections a brief message to introduce yourself, or reintroduce yourself if you’ve previously met. This will give them a refresher and will help jog their memory from when you last spoke.

    3. Mention Things You Have In Common

    via GIPHY

    Take a look at your new LinkedIn connection’s profile and see what you have in common. Do you share a similar skill set? Do you volunteer for the same organization?

    Find something you share and start a conversation around it. It will make it easier for you to break into a real dialogue. Plus, it will help build a stronger personal connection between the two of you.

    4. Offer Your Support

    via GIPHY

    In order to have a strong network, you need to constantly offer value to it. When you meet a new connection, make it clear that you’ll be a valuable contributor to his or her network.

    You can say something like, “Please let me know how I can help you achieve your goals,” or “I’d be happy to support you in any way I can.”

    5. Don’t Ask For Favors Just Yet

    via GIPHY

    Don’t ask for anything right off the bat. It makes you look greedy.

    It’s important to build a relationship with this person before you ask for any favors. They’ll be more likely to help you out once they know who you are and that you’ll return the favor.

    Don’t be afraid to start a conversation with a LinkedIn connection ever again. Use these tips, and you’ll successfully grow your professional network.

    Need more help with your career?

    Become a member to learn how to UNLEASH your true potential to get what you want from work!

    This article was originally published at an earlier date.

    0 FacebookTwitterPinterestEmail
  • We are living through the next significant era. The AI Revolution, aka the Fourth Industrial Revolution, is upon us. It is very tempting to believe that AI, like ChatGPT, holds the key to landing your dream job. With promises of crafting impeccable resumes, cover letters, and acing interviews, it’s easy to fall into the trap of thinking that a well-programmed algorithm can do it all. However, the truth remains unaltered: the power of human connection and authentic conversations truly shape your career trajectory.

    Unlocking Career Success: The Role Of AI And Authenticity

    Artificial intelligence (AI) in the job search

    ​Picture this: You’ve meticulously fed an AI with all your achievements, skills, and aspirations, and it spits out the most polished resume you’ve ever seen. This automated process might get your foot in the door, but what happens when you walk through that door? The interview room isn’t where AI shines, and here’s why.

    Beyond Algorithms: The Human Touch In Navigating Interviews

    Man shakes hands with the hiring manager before a job interview

    Firstly, conversations and highlighting what makes you uniquely you is where true compatibility and synergy can be explored on the employer/employee fit. A resume might outline your accomplishments but YOU must convey your personality, values, and passion for the role.

    These intangible qualities are the very things that build connections and make employers remember you. When you rely solely on AI-generated materials, you’re missing a chance to showcase your uniqueness, which sets you apart from other candidates.

    Crafting Uniqueness: Standing Out Beyond AI-Generated Resumes

    Hiring manager reads the job applicant's resume during an interview

    There is a reason a “love letter” to a potential employer has a significant effect on your eligibility for employment. That message, email, or video message can SHOW the recruiter how you align with the company’s mission, vision, and values. Not just that but the hiring manager needs to be sure you will be a fit within the team.

    Don’t believe me? Ask any of the thousands of Work It DAILY members who have utilized the disruptive cover letter and their success in getting an interview or accelerating their interview process.

    Embracing Authenticity: Where AI Falls Short In The Job Hunt

    Man writes a cover letter on his laptop

    Furthermore, utilizing AI to “game the system” by embellishing your resume can have dire consequences comparable to outright lying about your credentials.

    In the information age, it’s becoming increasingly easier for employers to fact-check and verify the authenticity of claims. Imagine the embarrassment of being caught off-guard during an interview when questioned about a skill you don’t possess. Your credibility takes a hit and, suddenly, your AI-generated masterpiece crumbles under scrutiny. Hiring managers may sound a bit like Ariana Grande by saying “Thank U, Next” if you can’t back up what you have presented in your materials.

    Employers are skilled at spotting discrepancies between AI-polished presentations and in-person interactions. Authenticity matters, and when it’s absent, the disconnect is palpable.

    Networking: The Unparalleled Strategy For Job Search Triumph

    Young professionals at a networking event

    So, what’s the secret ingredient to triumph in your job search? It’s the age-old power of genuine connection and networking. While AI can certainly streamline processes, human factors solidify relationships. Whether attending (even virtually!) industry events, participating in seminars, or even engaging on professional social media platforms, these interactions offer an opportunity to showcase your skills, passions, and character in a way that AI simply cannot replicate.

    Success stories of professionals and executives repeatedly highlight the significance of networking. Meeting someone face-to-face, discussing shared interests, and forging a memorable conversation can open doors that no AI-generated cover letter can. It’s about making a lasting impression, demonstrating your expertise through interactive discussions, and leaving behind a memory employers will recall when hiring decisions.

    In conclusion, while AI has its place in optimizing certain aspects of the job search process, it is not a magic bullet that guarantees success. Rather than relying solely on automated tools to craft a perfect presentation, job seekers should recognize the immense value of authentic connection. Your skills, passion, and personality shine brightest in conversations that leave a lasting impact.

    So, the next time you’re tempted to let an AI take the reins of your job search, remember that genuine connections are your most potent weapon. Invest time in networking, engage in meaningful conversations, and let your authenticity drive your career journey.

    Looking for your career network? Check out the 7-day free Work It DAILY community trial and stay for connections, events, courses, and more.

    P.S. Don’t forget to say hi in my DMs when you join and reference this article!

    0 FacebookTwitterPinterestEmail
  • Every season is job search season if you want it bad enough. However, there are some that view summer as a time of rest and ease up on their job searches. That’s the last thing you should do!

    Sure, you should take time to relax and go on vacation—just don’t abandon your job search goals completely. Here are four ways to keep your job search on track, while still enjoying your summer:

    Update Your Resume & LinkedIn Profile

    Young professional on laptop works on her job search while enjoying the summer weather

    A new season is a time for renewal, so it’s important to make sure your resume and LinkedIn profile are current and up to date with projects, contributions, and achievements. Summer is a great time for reflecting on the work you have done over recent months and leveraging those accomplishments to have a results-driven resume and LinkedIn profile.

    While your resume takes precedence, you should still give your LinkedIn profile a good look because it’s public and is viewable by a greater geographic population. Do not underestimate the power of LinkedIn for your job search potential.

    Attend Networking Events

    Group of people at a networking event during the summer

    Summer is a great time to be more social. Attend professional events, go to business happy hours, and ramp up your networking opportunities. Connect with old colleagues over lunch outdoors in casual attire, and seek out the potential for informational interviews at companies. Since things are more casual and laid back in the summertime, ramp up the opportunities and seize them.

    If you can’t attend any in-person networking events, there are still ample opportunities to network online!

    Refocus Your Strategy By Volunteering

    A businessman volunteers at a local food pantry while looking for a job

    The beautiful summer weather is great motivation for engaging in new volunteer and community service opportunities. Consider the potential for making new connections and adding volunteer projects to your resume and LinkedIn profile that you are already updating during the summertime.

    Remember, summer days are longer. Use your time wisely, and to your benefit!

    Re-Evaluate And Reach Out

    Spend the summer re-evaluating your current role. What skills are you developing in your current role? What skills do you want to build upon? Consider reaching out to recruiters or your professional network, people who can help bring your next role to fruition. LinkedIn is a great resource for connecting with recruiters and seeing if new projects or opportunities are available to expand your skills.

    Don’t let the summer weather be a distraction or setback for you. Focus on reclaiming your brand, take a break or a vacation, and regroup on where you would like to go next in your career. Remember one important thing: the year is already halfway over, so it’s important to seize the moment and the opportunity.

    Need more help with your job search?

    Become a member to learn how to land a job and UNLEASH your true potential to get what you want from work!

    This article was originally published at an earlier date.

    0 FacebookTwitterPinterestEmail
  • Do you have a LinkedIn account just for the sake of having a LinkedIn account? If so, you’re not alone. Many people create a LinkedIn profile, fill out the basic information, and never touch their profile again. That’s a BAD strategy!

    The problem with this approach is that you don’t take the time to learn how to navigate or leverage LinkedIn to your advantage.

    LinkedIn can be a valuable resource for those looking for new career opportunities. There’s an option in the platform’s security settings that allows the user to let recruiters know they are open to new opportunities.

    Even if you’re happy in your career, you never want to close yourself off to new and exciting possibilities. In addition to career opportunities, LinkedIn is beneficial for networking and meeting new contacts to exchange ideas, which will help you build your personal brand and stay relevant in your industry.

    Here are a few ways to make better use of your LinkedIn profile:

    Use Content To Your Advantage

    Woman on phone posts content on LinkedIn

    It’s hard to get noticed on LinkedIn if you don’t stand out, and one easy way to stand out is by using content to your advantage. Content is king!

    Remain active on LinkedIn by consistently posting content about your industry and company. You can do this by creating your own content (if you’re an authority on a subject) or by sharing relevant and engaging articles. Posting relevant information about your profession helps to reinforce who you are as a professional and shows that you are engaged in your career.

    To get better organized with posting content, create a content calendar for your page that reminds you to post so you don’t fall behind.

    Another way to stand out is by creating graphics for your content to make it more visual. Free online tools like Canva can assist you with graphics and images for your posts.

    Update Your Profile Regularly

    Young professional on laptop updates his LinkedIn profile

    As your career goes on, your job responsibilities will change, and you may even get promoted. It’s important to put these changes on your LinkedIn profile because it shows a pattern of career growth. In addition, as your job responsibilities change, it may impact the skill sets and keywords that you want to feature in your headline and “About” section.

    It’s also important to highlight accomplishments when the opportunity presents itself. If you or your company win an award or recognition for work in the field, that information should be shared on your LinkedIn profile for personal branding purposes.

    Build Your Professional Network

    LinkedIn is a good way to stay in touch with former colleagues, mentors, and other significant professionals in your industry. Having a large network that you’re in contact with is important because these connections could potentially vouch for you when you’re looking for a new career opportunity, or even refer you for a job.

    Networking via LinkedIn is also a good way to get past the applicant tracking system (ATS). You can track down and potentially connect with a recruiter on LinkedIn to get your information directly into their hands.

    Recruiters use platforms like LinkedIn to find top talent. It’s not uncommon for those who are successful in their careers to get job offers before even knowing that a job is available. That’s why it’s important to put your LinkedIn profile to use.

    By remaining active, you can easily make your LinkedIn profile work to your advantage. It shouldn’t sit idly by wasting away!

    Need more help with your LinkedIn profile?

    Sign up for our FREE Resume & LinkedIn Bootcamp today to learn how to update your resume and LinkedIn profile the way recruiters want!

    This article was originally published at an earlier date.

    0 FacebookTwitterPinterestEmail
  • It’s that time of year again when job seekers think they should stop looking for a job throughout the holiday season. No one will be hiring anyway, so you may as well take the rest of the year off, right? Not true, according to HR and job search experts.

    Although some companies may have no budget left for hiring, others still have openings they need to fill by the end of the fiscal year. That means it’s unwise to assume a company won’t be bringing on new candidates unless they announce a hiring freeze.

    The savvy job hunter maintains job search momentum throughout the holiday season and finds fresh ways to leverage networking to open doors with hiring employers. After all, there are increased opportunities to network offline throughout this period, and each event you attend offers the gift of connecting with people you haven’t met or haven’t seen in a while.

    Also, since the COVID-19 pandemic, virtual networking has become an essential part of your career, allowing you to continue to grow your professional network from the comfort of your own home. Over the holidays, attending a few virtual networking events will be easy, since you should already be familiar with them from your experience working from home or attending some in the past.

    As you launch your own holiday networking campaign, make sure you avoid these “naughty” tactics and follow the “nice” holiday networking tips instead.

    “Naughty” Holiday Networking Strategies To Avoid

    Two professionals network at a holiday office party

    1. Focusing only on your search needs. Leverage a give-to-get strategy instead by cultivating your relationship with the people you encounter in your holiday merrymaking. Ask them astute questions about their workplace needs, and look for ways you can help.

    2. Asking for jobs, information, or leads without offering to give one or more of the same first. Above all else, the holiday season is a time to connect in meaningful ways with people you already know and those you don’t. You can’t do this if your sole focus is on you.

    3. Pushing your job search agenda on influential contacts. If you focus on proving your usefulness first, you won’t have to push your agenda at all.

    4. Sending out networking requests disguised as holiday greetings. Remember: you don’t have to ask for something each time you connect with your network. Focus on giving something every time instead.

    5. Expecting quick responses from anyone about anything. The closer we get to Christmas and New Year’s, the more delay you can expect in any job-search-related communication. Accept this and move on.

    Focus your holiday energies on leveraging these “nice” door-opening strategies even Santa would love…

    “Nice” Holiday Networking Strategies To Try

    Group of professionals at a holiday networking event

    1. Attending a wide variety of holiday events and being prepared to make connections. Whether you’re going to parties or open houses, joining a friend for a company event, or enjoying dinner with one or more friends, use every outing to gather insight and information. Replace your usual holiday networking outings with virtual networking events if you have safety concerns (or just like the convenience of it).

    2. Preparing a two-sided business card for on-the-spot networking. Present your personal branding statement on side one, and showcase your experience, credentials, and impacts briefly on side two. If a two-sided card is too small, try a fold-over card that allows you to print text inside and out. If this is still too small, why not try a postcard instead?

    3. Building a holiday list. Like Santa, you need to know what everyone on your target list is seeking. Ask the contacts and job seekers you meet how you can help them, and keep a record of their responses for immediate follow-up. Look for ways to refer job seekers to recruiters and companies, and suggest recruiters and companies to job seekers.

    4. Proactively referring potential candidates to recruiters, companies, and hiring managers. Be the star in your network by preparing a brief intro about job seekers you know and feel comfortable recommending, then offer their contact information (with permission, of course) to recruiters and companies that match the job seekers’ search targets.

    5. Following up promptly. Don’t let those holiday connections go to waste! Make sure you follow up with new members of your network soon after meeting them, to let them know how nice it was connecting with them, and to keep the communication lines open.

    6. Using the period between Christmas and New Year’s to re-contact all previous interviewers. Let your past interviewers know that you’re still available. I’ve known more than one candidate who reopened an opportunity by proactively reaching out during an otherwise slow period.

    7. Sending out New Year’s greetings to influential contacts in your network. Include a short, brand-driven message about your value proposition, assuming that you have previously sent a holiday message with zero branding included. This strategy allows you to refresh the memories of your influential contacts with your candidacy as they put the holidays behind them and return to work in the new year.

    Remember persistence and assertiveness are always in season. When paired with smart search strategies, your holiday networking can yield a bounty of new gifts in the new year.

    Need Some Help With Your Networking Strategy?

    via GIPHY

    Networking is something most professionals struggle with. But the truth is, your network is your net worth.

    If you don’t have a strong network, your career will suffer. It will also make your job search more difficult than it needs to be.

    Need help building your professional network? We can help!

    We’d love it if you signed up for Work It Daily’s Event Subscription! Get your career questions answered in our next live event!

    This article was originally published at an earlier date.

    0 FacebookTwitterPinterestEmail
  • Come along intended for Networking Masters (think Toastmasters but for networking)! Within this interactive group session, you will exercise your networking plus presenting skills so an individual can become a more assured connector!

    Our virtual event requires place via Zoom exactly where you’re able to discuss unique experiences and trade information, advice, and recommendations with a selection of like-minded professionals.

    Join our own CEO, J. T. O’Donnell, and Director to teach Development & Coaching, Christina Burgio, for this reside event every Friday in 1 pm ET or 10 am PT.

    We hope in order to see you there!

    0 FacebookTwitterPinterestEmail

This website uses cookies to improve your experience. We'll assume you're ok with this, but you can opt-out if you wish. Accept Read More