Did you know that around 60% of jobs are never actually advertised?
Crazy, isn't it? But one way you can access these hidden jobs is by networking (it's not that scary, trust us).
Networking is not only a great way of getting to know people outside of your circle, it is one of the most powerful ways you can find a new job. Often, getting a job is about who you know.
Start with family and friends
You can start networking by simply talking to people you already know such as family, friends or old work mates. It's easier to start with people you already know but remember that adding new contacts is a key part of networking. Start small, then keep expanding your network by meeting new people.
Find out about events
Networking events are a good way to find new contacts. You can find out about these through contacts and groups in your industry. If not, Google is your friend!
Before you go to the event, write a 30-second speech about yourself. This is called an ‘elevator pitch’ and is an opportunity to quickly communicate who you are, your skills, your experience and where you hope to go in future.
First impressions last
When it comes to networking successfully it’s important to make a good first impression so dress well, be confident, make good eye contact and offer a firm handshake (no crushing fingers though).
Carry copies of your resume or business card/contact details with you in case someone asks for them, and talk to as many people as you can. You never know where your next job may come from!
Utilise websites like LinkedIn
Social media sites such as LinkedIn can help you add to your network. LinkedIn is a great tool for finding new contacts. Start by connecting with previous workmates, then extend your network by connecting with their contacts. Don't be afraid of asking for an introduction.
Visit local businesses
Use Google Maps to find local businesses in your area that may be hiring. Go and introduce yourself and hand your resume to them in person.
Networking is one of the most effective ways of finding a job. The more you network the more likely it is that you’ll find someone who can help you in your job search.