Taking the Stress from Career and Job Networking–Help Others

The NY Times published an article with career ideas about how to deal with the “no reply” problem when job hunting–that is, when you apply for a job or have an interview and just never hear back. The author, Michael Melcher, recommended a few things to deal with the job hunt in these tough times.  These tips included realizing others may be a lot busier than you are, lessening dependence on the internet and basically getting out and being with other people so you are not isolated on the internet all day.

Being with others can be crucial.  One of his tips around this was to make connections for other people.  Melcher writes, “Whatever barriers you are facing in the employment markets, you are probably in a position to others in their job searches, whether through advice, referrals or just being a friend. Helping others make progress is a good way to remind yourself that you do have an impact on the world.”

Good points.  But what can you do?  Should you wait until someone asks for help?  Not at all.  I generally find that my career coaching clients have greater success if they are active about making connections for others and not passively waiting to be asked to help.

For instance, at any networking event, instead of focusing primarily on telling others who you are and what you offer, a technique to really get remembered is to listen carefully to others and find out what career help they are seeking.  Jot down that information and let the people you are talking with know that you will be looking out for good connections for them. Then, go ahead and look out for good connections for them as you meet and mix. Even doing this for a few people, you can become the hub of the event instead of another person needing something.

Of course, it’s great when you others return the favor, taking your lead. But that’s not your focus.

This also reduces anxiety and stress many people have about what to do and how to act at networking events.


© 2008 by Leonard Lang


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