Need a Job? Reach Out To Your Network For Help
Last updated October 18, 2020
Need a job? Reach out to your network for help!
Finding a job can be tough! The time, energy, and persistence it takes to land a job is full-time work in itself. While it’s important to apply to jobs online, one of the fastest ways to get your foot in the door is by using your network to land an interview. Here’s how to reach out to your network to snag your next job.
Make a list of people in your network
Think of 7 to 10 people you know and write their names down. If you are having trouble thinking about people to add to your list, don’t worry. Your network is everyone you have ever met, so your list can be a mix of friends, family members, teachers, neighbors, and previous bosses and co-workers. After you create your list, it’s time to make the ask.
Everyone in your network has the potential to help you find a job. For the best results, it’s important to be mindful of what you ask and HOW you reach out to each person on your list. Don’t just send the same text or email saying “I need your help” - that’s a great way to not get any responses.
Review each person on your list and think of a specific question or request to ask. If you are reaching out to a family member or close friend, it’s okay to send a text asking for help with your job search. If you are reaching out to a former teacher, counselor, or someone you don’t know well, that will require a more formal approach - a phone call or an email.
Don’t be shy
If reaching out to your network makes you anxious or nervous, then start slow. Reach out to the person you know the best and ask them to introduce you to someone in their network who can help.
Do your research
After you schedule a time to meet with people in your network, it’s time to do your research. Come prepared with 3-5 questions you want to know about the company or industry your contact works in. Ask your contact how they got started in the industry and how you can get your foot in the door as well (but do not directly ask them for a job).
Say thank you
After your meeting, make sure you follow up with a thoughtful thank-you note to show your appreciation for people taking time out of their schedules to meet with you. Be sure to share what you learned during your conversation and how you will use that information moving forward.
Stay in touch
Not every conversation you have with someone in your network will immediately lead to a job opportunity - the goal is for them to keep you in mind whenever an opportunity comes around. Stay in touch with your connections by reaching out a few times a year - not to ask for something, but to check-in.