During normal times it is easy to find yourself neglecting your network of professional contacts. During this trying year, it is even more likely that you might be neglecting to reach out if you are not on a zoom meeting with them.
Active job-hunters know social networking sites, especially LinkedIn, can be some of the best tools for finding employment opportunities because it is easy to network with other professionals, friends, family, co-workers, and new contacts. But suppose you are happy in your job. In that case, you forget to continue to update your LinkedIn profile with recent accomplishments and connect with new co-workers and industry contacts you’ve met at previous conferences.
While we don’t think you need to be always looking for the next best thing, we do believe that you need to be prepared when life throws you an unexpected curveball, especially during a year like this. In other words, you never know when you may need to utilize your resume and contacts again.
Tips to Connect With Your Network of Professional Contacts
Here are four tips to help you stay on track with your resume and professional contacts:
Stay in Touch
Carve out time each week to go through your business cards of new and old connections and get LinkedIn with them. It’s an easy way to say “it was nice to meet you” or “remember me, I met you at…” and that you would like to stay in touch.
If you know a professional contact, friend, or family member looking for a job and you can help, don’t hesitate. Getting recommended for an interview gives that job-seeker a leg up on the competition. You also never know where that person may be able to help you out in the future. During trying times, helping someone else can be a mental health boost for both you and the recipient.
Consider using any free time you might have to give others recommendations on LinkedIn. When employers see current recommendations, they usually feel the person is a relevant candidate, especially if they are getting genuine recommendations during this time.
When you further your education by taking some classes, getting promoted, or landing a big client, don’t be afraid to add that to your LinkedIn profile and resume. As your job changes and grows, so should your resume. The easiest way to update your resume is through your LinkedIn profile, where co-workers, clients, and even your boss can comment on a job well done. Be sure to thank them for their comments and keep the connection going.
Promote Good Things That Happen To Someone In Your Network Of Professional Contacts
Another opportunity to connect is when you see something positive happening for someone else. You comment and share their good fortune on social. According to a post on the Muse, “When they get a new job, give a great presentation, or publish an article on a major website, send them a quick note to congratulate them on their milestones and tell them that you admire the work they are doing.” The person who congratulates and promotes others always looks good and others see you actively helping others.
A job search strategy isn’t something you should only think about when you are actively looking for a new job. It’s what you do BEFORE you start looking for a new job that’s equally important. If you have been neglecting your network of professional contacts, now is the time to do something about it.
Do You Need Career Search Help?
If you need help updating your resume, practicing for an interview, or organizing your job search information during these challenging times, consider reaching out to Rachel Schneider at Career Find to assist you.