You are in the midst of a tough job search and doing what you thought you were supposed to do. Doling things like applying to jobs, even doing some networking with some friends and family, but nothing is working.
Well perhaps it is time to start taking your networking to the next level with one of these 5 innovative ideas.
1. Start Your Own Networking Group
That’s what I did. I noticed that in Halton there wasn’t an online networking group, so I created one on Facebook. An online one is great as it allows you to network with other job seekers and of course lots of employed people and it is a comfortable way to start building relationships. Maybe you could even host some in person events to meet with the group “live”.
To start one, pick your platform – Facebook or LinkedIn are great for online. LinkedIn is more professional but the groups aren’t always super active. Facebook is great because it is more interactive, but some people may not think to look for a networking group on Facebook.
Another alternative is to start a MeetUp group which is more geared to in person but has an online component, the big draw back is cost as MeetUp doesn’t allow anyone to create a group for free.
Once you’ve created the group make sure you invite all of your friends and family, promoting it in relevant Facebook groups and post about it on all your social media channels. Then begin to target individuals who are in careers, companies and industries that you want. That way you can begin to build those key relationships for your future.
2. Post a Video Resume
Create a video (or series of videos) and post it on relevant social media channels (especially LinkedIn). Don’t regurgitate your resume though, instead use this as an opportunity to help potential employers understand what you have achieved, how you made a difference and what you are capable of achieving in the future.
Make sure your personality is shining through, that is what this video resume is, a chance for a potential employer (or networking contact) to see YOU. Keep is short and sweet, around 2 minutes and it goes without saying, be professional.
3. Give Back
This especially works if you are in an active job search (read: not working), instead of treating your job search like a full time job, get out of your head and give back.
Find a volunteer opportunity that allows you to keep your skill set active or even build new skills that will be useful for your future job.
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again (and again…) that a positive mindset goes a LONG way in a career so keeping yourself productive while giving back to your community will keep your spirits high. Plus, it will look good on your resume and LinkedIn profile!
4. Knock On Doors
In this world of technology, the personal touch gets lost. We hide behind our computer screens and apply to jobs and hope for the best.
Sometimes we need to go old school, especially for a job we really want. So if a dream job comes up at a dream company, apply through normal channels, do your research on the potential hiring manager and reach out through email. Then print out your resume and show up in person. At the front desk, simply state that you wanted to drop an application off to the hiring manager (providing their name). You never know, the manager may be available and may pop down to see you. Stranger things have happened!
No matter what, it shows that you take initiative and that you aren’t afraid to go the extra mile for something you are passionate about.
5. Take Advantage of Everyday Moments
Every day we are faced with potential networking opportunities – I’ve heard of jobs happening based off of conversations on the soccer field, in the dentist’s chair and running into old friends.
Since networking is about getting people invested in your success based off of building strong relationships it doesn’t have to happen in a traditional “professional setting”. Start asking people questions while out and about and casually mention your next move.
Taking control and ownership of your future will not only help uncover those hard to find opportunities but it will also boost your confidence and set you up for success when they do come around.
Are you struggling in your job search? Book a free consult, we'll talk it through, I'll give you some actionable advise so that you can (finally) land that right career.
Sara Curto, Career Management Specialist. Working with you towards Career and Job Search Success.
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