Job Search 101: The power of networking and job fairs
If you're in the midst of a job search, you may have already spent countless hours reaching out to people. Perhaps you're meticulously selecting contacts related to your industry who could be looking for someone with your profile.
Maybe you're already active in professional networks like LinkedIn, and that's a good thing. After all, 87% of recruiters use LinkedIn to find potential candidates.
Building social networks
Social media platforms have revolutionised the way people connect with one another, including for professional purposes. When it comes to networking for job opportunities, there are several social media platforms that can be highly effective. LinkedIn is the most well known as a platform specifically designed for professionals to connect with one another, share job postings, and showcase their skills and expertise.
Twitter is another platform that can be highly effective for networking. While it may not be specifically designed for professional networking, Twitter allows users to connect with others who share their interests and can be a valuable tool for building relationships. By engaging with industry thought leaders and participating in Twitter chats related to your field, you can connect with potential employers or colleagues.
Facebook is often thought of as a platform for personal connections, but it can also be an effective tool for professional networking. Facebook groups can be a valuable resource for job seekers, as they provide opportunities to connect with others in your field, learn about job openings, and participate in discussions related to your industry.
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Attending job fairs and meeting new people
Attending job fairs and other related events is also an excellent way to network. These events provide job seekers with the opportunity to connect with employers face-to-face, learn about new job openings, and gain valuable insights into different industries. You introduce yourself, talk to people who could be potential links to your goal, and make meaningful connections. Additionally, job fairs often feature workshops, seminars, and panels where industry professionals share their knowledge and experience. By attending these events, you can gain valuable insights into different industries and learn about new career opportunities.
Another advantage of attending job fairs is that they allow you to learn more about specific companies and industries. You can meet with representatives from different organisations, learn about their culture, values, and goals, and ask questions about potential job opportunities. By doing so, you can gain a better understanding of what different companies are looking for in their employees and tailor your job search accordingly.
Here are some tips to make your networking efforts more effective:
1) Have a complete LinkedIn profile and be active in the network. This will make you more visible to those who are looking for talent for their companies. You should also showcase your interests, capabilities, and knowledge of certain topics.
2) Be straightforward about your job search. There's no need to be ambiguous about your intentions. Being open and honest always works best. However, you should also show proactivity, initiative, and confidence in your abilities when contacting people.
3) Establish clear and measurable goals. For example, if you're using LinkedIn, you can set a goal for how many people you'll contact each day. If you're attending a trade show, prepare in advance and determine which companies or people you're interested in meeting.
4) Be organised. Keep track of your networking activity in a spreadsheet or any other system you prefer. Don't send invitations or make calls and contacts without recording them, or you may forget who you've already contacted.
In conclusion, don't underestimate the power of networking when looking for a job. Take advantage of social media platforms, attend job fairs and other related events, and be proactive in your job search. By doing so, you can increase your chances of finding your next career opportunity. Good luck!