Making sure your resume and LinkedIn profile are amazing is just half the battle.
The other half? Networking to get your resume and profile in front of the right person at the right time for the right job.
Start your list by thinking about who you know from family and friends to neighbors and colleagues. It’s a good idea to go beyond the inner circle to include those “second stringers” (think a dad on a child’s field hockey team or a woman who you may know from tennis).
Expand your list by utilizing LinkedIn’s advanced company and people search functionality to locate hiring managers at companies that interest you, recruiters and professionals successful in your desired job field.
If you know a person, options for outreach include email, phone calls, and LinkedIn’s Inmail. Just be sure to include a customized message that includes the kind of work you’ve done and what you’d like to do.
Don’t be afraid to ask for specific names, information or words of advice.
If you don’t know a person super well or not at all, you can reach out via InMail or do a bit of legwork to figure out their work email address.
This can be accomplished by going to a company website and looking at press releases or “contact us” information to determine how the organization’s emails appear (i.e., TomBrady@NewEnglandPatriots.com or TBrady@NewEnglandPatriots.com).
Another option is to type in the company’s name with the @ symbol in front of it on any search engine (i.e., @NewEnglandPatriots.com) and see what comes up.
Practice Patience and Appreciation
This may be the hardest part for many keen job seekers, who quickly grow impatient and/or struggle with asking for this kind of assistance.
In addition to expressing gratitude by personally thanking anyone for any help of any kind related to your job search, remember to reciprocate by sharing articles of interest, checking in from time to time, and extending to them the offer to reciprocate should the time arise.
Practice patience should you not be inundated with leads as quickly as you’d like. Schedule a follow-up outreach once a month, where you can appraise them of your job search progress, and repeat your request for assistance.