You know you should network. You know many people find jobs and get promoted through networking. So what’s the hold up?
Sometimes knowing how to network is the hard part. Scott and Andrew share the Top 9 Ways to get your networking Done.
Don’t miss these Topics:
- Top 9 Methods to Get your Networking Done
- Best practices for networking to make it easier.
Resources (including affiliate links)
Raw and Unedited Transcript
00:00:01 – 00:05:07
welcome to job seekers radio. I’m Andrew and I’m Scott. This is a podcast. Meant to provide you meaningful support to find great careers faster. And that’s whether you’re working or not. Today’s episode is brought to you by the anatomy of a networking conversation e book. It’s a free resource that you can download download at Jobseeker’s radio DOT COM. There’s a little link on the homepage where you can do so down at the bottom of the page you can put in your little email address and we’d be happy to send you that a free resource. You can put your big email address in there to today’s episode is the top nine ways. Networking can be done. There are a lot of definitions editions out there. And we’re going to go over the ones that we think are both the most common but also the must effective how we execute this whole networking can take many different forms often often when I talk to job seekers or even professionals that are working they believe networking to be something very specific. They kind of have put it in a box right. And and basically the approach that we generally take is used the things that work don’t limit yourself to only the things that you know about. There’s always an an opportunity to try something new. So what does that look like. We want to talk about some of that today and at the end will actually ty shift gears and talk about. What is it successful conversation? Sation what should you really have outside of just the methods. We’re going to talk about and really we’re going to start here with the nine ways. You can actually have a conversation with with somebody and the first way you can do. That is in a group setting many job seekers. I’ve talked to say they think networking is. I have to go somewhere where I don’t know anybody. And there’s there’s a large group of people and that’s what networking and networking event. Whether that is a group of people that are looking for work it might be an association and King Opportunities some something that has a theme or maybe they have a speaker. Maybe not but it’s where everybody gathers and again the room full of people you don’t know but you have something in common with so that works. We recommend that. If that’s your thing do it do it as much as you can. Because if it is a numbers burst game for you you will pick up something if you go to enough of them you might find these on something like meet up or event right. It might be an association might might be a job seekers group. These group events are really good to meet New People. You don’t know. And that’s the whole point. Is that often some people think networking working in just talking to the people. I already know. And if we only talk to the people we know we’re GONNA get diminishing return absolutely. This is a great way to go to a new environment. Meant to test your limits. Get outside your comfort zone. Meet somebody I hadn’t yet known yet and really what did they say. Strangers are only friends. You haven’t met yet. I personally a enjoy doing these kinds of networking events because that fits my style and I understand. They’re different people. Different styles different things that were even for those four home. The networking events can be a little uncomfortable. It can still be valuable experienced. We do recommend that you try that. It’s going to be the most visible you’re going to have the most post operative there and as you approach them. Don’t go in with an expectation that you’re going to have a home run in this one experience if you keep appear expectations relatively low then. Frees you up to look for things that you wouldn’t necessarily be expecting. It’s sort of counterintuitive to less issue going expecting the more you walk out with the other group event I would take a look at is. It is actually a job fair. I’ve seen these career job fairs. It’s a group group of people. It’s an exceptionally good place to network. Because either the people there have jobs or the people you meet who are looking for work ended up getting a job somewhere that you worry. So there’s a lot of benefit to do to looking at job fairs as a networking group of absolute that way rather than just a place to find a job for well and then there’s also the those who are looking for a job at the job fair when you strike up the conversation. They may know of something that is more up your alley than it was affairs. You’re making connections with people. If you have the job seeking in common often you’ll become comrades arms here and they can help broaden broadened the scope of your reach their within the group context. What we’re really talking about is having one on one conversations? You can’t have one too many but the the second way that you can do. Networking conversation is individually in person. And that could happen in a group context but more often than not. It’s it’s you taking aching. Maybe the group context offline at another time or something of that nature so The the second way would be networking individually with so so if you’re going to the large group event and you meet someone that you want to have a conversation with. You don’t necessarily have to have that deep conversation there. If you’re in a position to set up at the time not too far in the future to get together individually then that can be really impactful conversation.
00:05:07 – 00:10:07
One you will have had the large group experience that you can talk about later compare notes what worked for you. What didn’t because that will be the beginning of your individual conversation? It’s sort of warms both parties up up and you can then talk about the things that are more important to both of you. Investing that time is really critical and building a relationship of trust short. It’s something we’ll get to a little bit later. Her what I look at in terms of the individual conversations. I kind of look at it if you’re not used to doing those things is start with the people you know I now. You shouldn’t just stay there. We talked about the downside of doing that but the next step is to get introduced to people. They know that you don’t yet know. And then going then onto people who you just flat don’t know talking to the people that you do know especially if they’re closer friends or even family members. You may think that you know everyone they do. But but that’s not true intellectually. You probably know that that’s not true. But what could they possibly due to introduce me to somebody. I don’t know well. Are you having the the conversation with them. I know I don’t talk to my closest friends about networking beyond the people that that I know to include the people they know if I’m taking that opportunity opportunity with someone that I do trust to say. Hey I really want to reach beyond my current circle. Can you help me meet New People. The chances are pretty a good. They’ll think of somebody and then it starts from there and don’t overlook that even though you may know the same people they might know that person a little bit better than you you do or in a different way in a different way and the challenge that you have when you go to people you know is they know us a certain person and if you don’t want to be known as that person you really have to change aged listening for you and so if I’m right now. People may know me as Andrew Realtor but now I’m Andrew Career Coach or executive coach leadership development person or or whatever. Exactly how do I then reach out to that person and have that conversation. Maybe that’s another podcast episode. or You could take a look at the anatomy of a networking conversational. Help you Louis. Some of those things on how to build a branding statement and to have a new conversation with the same people right if someone already perceives me as a specific specific identity or job title or whatever that might look like. It’s going to take some effort to undo that and it may never be successful it you think about the really close close personal relationships you have with people they always see you as how they met you or how they interacted with you so even if they know that you have shifted into to a new direction they may not make those same kinds of connections. That’s okay the idea then is to try to meet people who see you in the new identity or the new job title or whatever it is. He wanted us to define and have that. Networking conversation happened a little differently. The Third Way that you can think about executing this networking networking is to on the phone. I actually really appreciate this because it does a couple of things for me. It saves me a whole bunch of time trying to fit somebody you my schedule and then drive somewhere. Meet them and then drive back where I could actually be interacting with several other folks during that time or executing would I have done on my work so the one thing that I lead with especially as I am scheduling a phone conversation. First of all in person networking provides an opportunity to really communicate. One hundred percent of your message when you think about communication fifty five percent of what we communicate is in our body language. Another thirty three thirty eight percent is tone of voice. Only seven percent of what we communicate is in the words that we choose so. If we can’t meet in person I want to at least allow them almost half of the message to include tone of voice and that’s a phone call it really even even though it feels less personal than and in-person meeting and in fact that’s true it’s still is far better than email even that has its place the idea that you’re actually actually having an exchange in the moment is going to help you make that kind of progress. I also encourage coaching clients. If they’re doing networking in the person they can meet with in person isn’t available till six weeks down the road but they got fifteen minutes to talk on the phone right now by all means do it right take advantage of that it because you can set up the one two down the road for later absolutely and if you had a video camera on right now you could see there were actually using non verbal communication. Saly totally and I believe that that still translates maybe not as effectively as in person. But if you’re on the phone please continue to use the non verbal communication because because that will come through on the phone absolutely but you bring up video video. Chat is another way that you can networking network with people and if it’s different some people people don’t like to do it because it feels too much like facetime and they have associated video chatting with just the personal conversations.
00:10:07 – 00:15:04
The reason why they feel so personal is because has your having a lot more of the communication happening. It isn’t as impersonal as just a phone call. Other people may not like using video for for whatever reason. There are many addressed that carefully when you have an opportunity to video chat with someone to do that networking conversation. Don’t pass that up. Yeah don’t don’t say no I mean I would never turn down a conversation of any kind. Well maybe sometimes Scott reaches out to me at inopportune Mo- I just have to say no in the side effect of being able to do this. Networking thing really well is something. We’ve addressed and other podcasts. But it needs to be restated. Is that if I’m doing networking I’m practicing kissing an interview. If I’m doing my networking on the phone. I’m practicing for a phone screen. Many companies are now transitioning toward video interviews at the front end of a process. US and many of these might be recorded but there certainly is still all kinds of HR companies coming on the scene narrator revolving around video interviews. Yes I’ve I’ve seen that very recently. Where even someone who is local? You may be five minutes from their office and they’re still going to schedule a video interview. I appreciate appreciate why I it’s not my preference. It certainly isn’t what I would do if I were conducting the interview. But we’re finding this more and more common so so be prepared for that and the the advice and I think we may have said this in the past dress as if it’s the in person interview including put on the suit pants. Don’t wear Pajama Jammeh. Pants right. Yes because if you get hired you’ll be able to joke about that later dress for an in person interview even though it is via video not only will you appear more professional but you will behave differently. That’s number four using the video chat to do your networking number. Five is actually a group video environment. Virement many people haven’t thought about this but there’s a lot of video training and webinars. There’s a lot of things that go on online in a group video environment where you can have a zoom call Brian. There’s fifteen twenty people there and there’s all this silence and you’re like hey joe what do you do right. You know. It’s really funny. How something you go to learn ends up turning into networking interaction? which is a connection individually? That leads to something else. Absolutely idea that when you’re doing group video chat hat and you can see all the different faces on the screen and you can pay attention to every single one of them in one view and I think about panel interviews. Personally I enjoy them because for me it’s sort of a kind of performance aspect and so as I’m going through. I have to remember to address the person who asked the question but then to include everybody else and so that shifts with every question whoever is posing the question is the one who gets the majority of the eye contact. But I’m including everyone in when when you’re doing a group video chat you don’t have to worry about that. All you have to do is look at the camera. Remember to look at the camera because so often we see the people sitting At the computer doing their video chatting and they’re not actually looking at the camera. They’re looking at their screen. Be Aware that the reason why you want to look at your camera is so they I feel you are looking at them You’re addressing them. Personally it’s the same reason why. TV News will put the teleprompter glass in front of the camera. Laura so they are always looking into the camera that’s how they make connections with their viewers. Same thing in a group video chat. That’s how you build trust is to look somebody in the eye. We give the same advice when when you’re doing a maybe a linked in profile photograph. Is that you know you shouldn’t be having sunglasses on are looking off into the distance or whatever. Yeah so the group video chat. What kind of a variation of that that we might go into here is the sixth one and that is using the chat in sight of some sort of social network? Or Gosh. I’ve seen people. We’ll do this actually in gaming right they’ll be in a game with a group of players in there’s a chat going on and you know you’ll have some time there to say. Yeah I’m an engineer with Intel or whatever her and I’ve had people actually get interviews through a gaming chat fantastic point we think about the chat functions within facebook or linked tin or even the snapchat. And all these other the Grande Ecole a typical social media stuff. We don’t think of in this case gaming chat chat as a networking opportunity. But anytime you’re talking to someone you don’t know well even the Times you are talking to someone you do know well. These are opportunities for you food. If this subject comes up organically to start talking about things that matter in your career it’s another way to make a connection that you wouldn’t have had otherwise. Don’t past these things up. Keep the conversation topical based on whatever it is that brought you together. Allow people to know who you are how you want to move your career because you never know who’s going to be in a position to help each one of these social platforms.
00:15:04 – 00:20:03
Have some some way for you to put a status update or Lincoln has headlined headlines is just to see what you’re all about and on these gaming platforms. I know they have that too much like skype where you can type in. Hey what’s on your mind right now. It’s just a really really short blurb and that’s a great space to put in you know Looking for great engineering jobs in semiconductor manufacturing or wherever or changing the world one when candidate A. Ty tryon if you’re in HR. There are all sorts of ways that we use connectivity to connect with other people in my work I talk about connected leadership which is something other than connectivity that plays a role within it the idea of making connections with people all for the greater good that will have. It’s place what we’re talking about here is with connectivity. Let that be a tool for you to make connections with people that you wouldn’t necessarily have made that conversation really begin. don’t limit yourself to just linked in just facebook. Whatever that might happy? Don’t go into the danger of making it difficult on somebody else and once they say. Hey can you just send me a text message or can you call me. Use the method. They want you to you. Because then you actually get the networking done. Yes and so. Don’t use that as a dangerous excuse not to network because Oh I don’t know how to text message pige or oh. I don’t know how to do a video chat or oh I don’t have a Webcam. I would also challenge you. Don’t use the excuse. Oh I’m not comfortable. We don’t learn anything thing if we stay in our comfort zone. The learning happens when we’re outside of our comfort zone so if there is a platform or technology that you’re not necessarily comfortable with I would I’d say move yourself to get comfortable with a find out more about it and how it can be helpful to that brings us to the seventh way to network and that’s email now. A lot of people people will be completely comfortable with email. And I send a lot of email you probably do. Two or and networking rubs in the networking world. Is You actually have to have a dialogue with another person. Just sending an email is not networking. It is not dialogue. It is the way we can make networking happen. How do we set it up? Why would we definitely recommend that people send messages if you’re going to connect on Lincoln and don’t just connect send a message as to why because otherwise and why would they care and it’s not that they shouldn’t care is that sometimes you need to tell the email will work in a similar function? It will provide the context or the reason reason behind making that connection. And hopefully you’ll be able to set up something in person or at least a phone call. That should be the goal. The email in and of itself has not networking. It’s the the tool we used to start at. We’re looking for a back and forth. Yes in on the topic of Hey. I’M GONNA send a standard connection request on lengthen. And and maybe they don’t care. Do I want a group of people in my network that don’t care I don’t know if auto collector of connections right I am a collector of connected people. Meaning I want people. Will that will respond when I say a message so if I do get one of the great perspective one of those little boilerplate. Hey I want to join your network things right I send a message back and my only litmus test is there you have to respond. And that’s how I accept it. It’s do the same thing I have in fact we’ve talked about this in. I think doc in the anatomy of a networking conversation about those who only connect with those that they have spoken with while. I am a little freer about connecting with people. I totally understand that comes from if you have not met me in person. Why would I list you as a connection while I may not follow that same role? It’s certainly understandable. So that’s where the e mail comes in. How do we set up that in person discussion and you have to give them reasons to do so? Email L. is a fantastic tool. It’s easy just. Don’t hide behind it as what we’re saying so that’s the seventh way is through email the eighth way which is actually becoming. I think more more prevalent to be honest is through text messages or or SMS. And I see a lot of people doing this. Many different ways but traditionally. That’s just a the standard text message. The one thing I really appreciate when someone wants to network with me via text messages when they asked me if that’s okay they don’t assume assume by sending me a text message they ask me in advance. Is it okay if I send you a text message do you network via text messaging. I always say yes because has has actually the easiest way to get a hold of me during the day. It’s often difficult for me to take calls because I’m either with clients. I am conducting training. Whatever that might look like so? I can’t always take the call. Not everyone likes to leave a voicemail messages which is unfortunate because I always respond to voicemail text message. You’re sure to get me even if I can’t respond right away but ask me I.
00:20:03 – 00:25:02
I just send people text messages. I assume that they want them. Maybe hang on Scott. Is it okay. Did I send you a okay. Well you’re you also have the advantage of having a role with your clients. There is already an expectation of wanting one thing that kind of communication in the moment from your perspective. I think that makes a lot of sense. I’m coming at it from from inside an HR world. Those kinds of relationships are a little different just by nature when people ask me. Is it okay to send me. A text. Message is showing respect because not everyone is comfortable using their personal cell l. phone not everyone wants to blur the lines between their professional conversations and their personal conversations if there are different perspectives. On how to do this I wanna be courteous enough to acknowledge a potential difference and then let them decide whether or not that’s good for them. I rarely get a no when I ask I. I liked text message because I get the message right away. With a voicemail message it’s going to be a possibly a little bit of time before I can then call in especially if time facilitating training or they didn’t give you an explicit reason why they were calling just call me back. That’s OK somebody I already know. Yeah give me a reason to call back. If you’re leaving me. The voice mail. Yeah please leave me a message. Text messages saying. Tell me why I should call back. It doesn’t have to go to great length. Give me a reason. That’s that’s the eighth way which is text. Message the ninth way is old school. It’s through the mail and I have seen people exchange correspondence through the mail. And I I would encourage everybody listening to this podcast to at least consider putting some form of networking by mail into their repertoire. Because not many people are doing it anymore that Mary view that means it’s not a noisy channel like email in fact I have found over time those little blurbs and we’re not talking marketing postcards I’m I think about some of the things that I get from insurance agents or realtors or a number of different businesses dentists chiropractors we get those those mailers all the time and we don’t really pay much attention to the molest that serves a need that we happen to have and we don’t already have a practitioner that we that we turn turn to what I’m talking about is a Little Card or short handwritten note that expresses something that is of value to me. Whatever that might be the idea that I got a handwritten note that someone else took the time and was courteous enough to go to that effort I am paying attention? Listen I don’t see enough of it anymore and personally I respond very well to it. It does mean that the other person needs to find out what my addresses I may be expecting affecting after they ask me. So what’s Your ailing address. And that’s okay because it happens so rarely and I think it’s important if you can capture a cell phone number in address just put it in your database. Can part of your process is to gather that information. I’ve also seen people use mail as promotional tool like that just to send. Hey I was thinking of you. I saw this article and they’ve actually cut write an article out of a magazine and thrown into printed it. Yeah they’re reading it online yet. Most publications nations allow you to print their articles. So yeah that is again. You’re being thoughtful. You’re going to your own effort spending your own time thinking about someone else that always and I realize you should never say never always. That always does well. That’s the nine ways that you can get the networking done i. I think it’s important to remember. What do you really need to make that conversation successful? And what that might mean first of all is that you have to use more another one of these methods to get to a person if there’s somebody that’s worthy of you actually pursuing that person as a networking connection because you feel it would be valuable to them and to you. But they don’t respond to a phone call or they don’t respond to your Lincoln message or an email right. You just keep going down the list of communication methods. Don’t let taken a response. Let’s now don’t do all those within a five minute period or or even a week’s period. Yeah yeah spread them out over time and seriously. No one is going to mind if you you are gently persistent. If you’re stalking them. That’s going to be a problem if you are pushing. That’s going to be a problem in most cases but if you’re if you do it gently the and thoughtfully especially if you’re talking to other people within their organization or whatever that looks like to find out what style do have what they appreciate your far more likely to land where you want to really. This is about developing trust if you’re pushy. They’re not going to trust you. People talk about. They don’t want to be sold. That heavy-handed sales sales type of demeanor doesn’t usually land very well if you have a good communication going on where both parties are being frank and open in an honest and thoughtful of the other person.
00:25:02 – 00:27:56
That’s where the real meat comes in. I’m just open. I’m interested in an open channel and the reason I said that way is if one method method isn’t working you’re right. We need to accommodate that person and find the why that is so that we can actually open a channel of communication and that’s where the next component comes in. And that’s it’s dialogue if you have an open communication channel great but if you’re the only one there or if you’re dominating conversation yeah just be conscious that this should be a dialogue back back and forth two way communication. Yes and then we were talking before we started about the concept of mutual benefit. You really need to make sure that you’re focused on what value you bring the other person. Not just what they can do for you and we also WanNa make the distinction that it’s not just saying saying what can I do for you. It’s really following through on that. How are you going to follow through on providing value to this other person? Even if that’s not obvious you could ask them. What can I do and they say? Well I don’t really know. Keep that part of the conversation going so that they understand after more than one conversation. Sation with you that you are truly interested in helping them if you can. You’re going to open those channels and built the trust mindset we talk about this a lot mindset any component opponent of your career journey navigating. These waters is going to require a certain kind of mindset. Can’t be overstated. Being mindful of the bigger picture is going to help you remember that nobody gets to success all by themselves. They have had people helping them along the way. So that’s what we’re looking for. What do those relationships look like? How can the more of them? How do I keep the Communication Channel Open and active and continuing the dialogue? I hope you got something out of this particular session today. Eh You can get all the show notes and resources and the Anatomy of networking conversation on our website at Jobseeker’s radio DOT COM forward slash zero seven zero and again that bravery source is the anatomy of never came conversation e book that puts the ideas together in one place to to help you figure out how this is going to work for you. Thank you for joining us for this episode of Job Seekers Radio We know that your investment of time and attention you might be on the treadmill color doing some kind of workout or whatever maybe in the car right we understand. It’s greatly appreciated to have your attention during this time. We would appreciate it if you head over to itunes. If that’s your platform that form and go ahead and leave us a rate and review. Yeah we really liked the feedback. Ask questions there too. We do an occasional podcast where we we are answering your questions so if you have any send them our way. We’ll put that in a future. podcasts Lime Andrew and Scott in the words of John shed a ship ship in harbor is safe but that is not what ships are built for. Thanks everybody by by.