Tapping into your existing network can be a valuable way to learn about potential new roles. Every day, for all sorts of reasons, there are changes at a company that could result in a job opening. Getting the “inside running” on that opening can give you a huge advantage.
In fact, it’s been my experience that the majority of jobs have always been filled in more informal ways.
It makes sense that a company CEO would prefer to make a key hire on the advice of people s/he knows. We all like to get a referral or recommendation from someone. It’s the reason why testimonials are very effective in marketing.
So your network is a valuable resource in your job search.
The trouble is, people’s networks are usually terrible.
I’m used to hearing executives, with 20 or 30 years of experience in a profession or in an industry sector, say they know very few people outside the companies they’ve worked for.
Personally, my network has been an incredibly valuable asset in my recruitment career. It’s helped me find great clients and it’s helped me find great candidates for those clients.
A strong network will turbo-charge the speed and success of your job search.
Here’s the good news.
Right here on LinkedIn is a fast, free, easy way for you to build an outstanding network of people who can directly help you with your career.
In my recent book Uncover the Hidden Job Market, I give the case study of Terry, a process engineer who found himself out of work. He attended my regular Always Stand Out seminar for job seekers and learned the huge potential value of a personal network.
At the time of the seminar, he had just 70 connections on LinkedIn and they were largely limited to former colleagues and classmates.
30 days later he had grown his network to 400 contacts. That’s an increase of nearly 500% in just one month.
More importantly, those contacts were working in his target sector and for the companies he was interested in.
How did he do it?
Simply by sending 15 connection requests every single day to people he wanted in his network.
Every day. 15 connection requests. No excuses.
That yielded him around 330 new contacts. (Don’t expect every connection request to be accepted.)
In upcoming posts, I’ll talk in more detail about to use my proven method to reach out to your network to find your job of choice with your employer of choice. Please follow me on LinkedIn so you don’t miss those articles.
Until then, please look at the size of your own LinkedIn network.
I want you to have at least 300 connections. You need at least that number for good visibility.
So every day, send off those connection requests to people in your industry, profession and company. You’ll be really glad you did.
Richard Triggs is the Founder and Managing Partner of Arete Executive, one of Australasia’s leading executive recruitment companies. He has championed the practice of helping people to “headhunt their own job” and you can find more advice about this in his book Uncover the Hidden Job Market (available from Amazon). You can also follow Arete Executive on LinkedIn for useful information and resources.