Did you know there is a hidden job vacancy market out there? These are the great jobs that hardly ever get advertised (or the advertising is a formality as there is already a front runner for the role)! Would you like to be the front runner?? It really is simple, this is known as "word of mouth" marketing, where other people submit your application for you. These are the jobs where a current employee or confidant of the boss hiring says "Hey - I think I know someone who'd be perfect for this role"!
It's seriously not rocket science, if you want to be one of those in demand employees it is time to polish off those conversation skills and tap into the power of networking!
I will bet my next chocolate fix that you have heard the saying "it's not what you know, but who". I'll admit, these days it's not exactly like the mob, or Hollywood: where a family or friend connection meant that you didn't need skills, talent or experience; you will of course need to have the goods! You will have much more success looking for a job you can show you have the experience and/or the aptitude for, but if you want an advantage over the potential hundreds of others applying, using your contacts is a smart move!
Types of networking
There are seriously many different types of networking you can use to your advantage. Of course there is the most common one we all think of, connect with a like minded business group who meets in your local area. Networking meetings are a fantastic way to meet new people and expand your connections.
Now if you are a bit uncomfortable meeting strangers and promoting yourself, a gentler way to get started could be to use LinkedIn a professional networking site. Unlike FaceBook and Twitter designed for personal connections,LinkedIn
is specifically designed to connect people in business. A good way to start is to look for old business contacts (worked for me when I came back to the workforce after maternity leave!).
The other key type of "networking" is to be sure to let the people you know, know you are on the hunt! Your family, friends and old colleagues (be careful who you choose if confidentiality is important). One tip of mine my clients have loved: look up some old bosses to update the reference section of your resume, you'd be surprised how many times a new job comes from an old boss!!