The holiday season is upon us, which means that hiring slows down quite a bit. When you’re on the prowl for a job this can be a frustrating time. However, don’t forget that once the new year hits, companies will jump right back into hiring mode, as it’s the beginning of their fiscal season. For the time being, there are plenty of ways to use other various weapons in your arsenal such as networking! If you practice these skills today, some good tidings may be headed your way in no time.
Now, networking is a powerful tool, but it is a tool that you need to know how to use properly. Here are some thoughts we had at Planet Interactive to help you get the most out of networking this holiday season!
Set Goals. You should make sure before you start networking that you know what you want and what you are looking for. If you don’t know what you want to get out of building a connection with someone, then why should they connect with you? As long as you know what you are passionate about, others will be more willing to connect with you and help you land your dream job!
Send out Greeting Cards. This is such an easy first step to take. Sending a holiday greeting card is a simple way to stay in contact with old friends, neighbors, family members. It’s also a great way to reconnect with key players. When it comes time for you to approach them about work, it will make an easier introduction.
Attend Holiday Events. Whether you’re going to an office party, a networking holiday event, a friend’s cocktail party or a family holiday dinner, you should attend as many events as you can. It’s often daunting to put your face on, work the room and schmooze, but the outcome only gets you ahead of the crowd.
Make it Personal. It’s best to not immediately dive into a pitch about yourself and your work ethic. Rather, try and connect with them on a personal level, maybe mention grabbing coffee or lunch one day. This’ll make it more likely that they’ll get back to you in the future because they’ll see you as more than just a job seeker, but a human being.
Listen. Don’t talk about yourself the whole time! Have some questions up your sleeve and find out who they are. It is always better to listen more than talk too much, and you never know what you might learn.
Follow-Up. After a holiday event, follow-up with the people you have connected with. Shoot them a quick email or call to let them know that you’re interested in working with them. Make it clear that as soon as the holidays are over, you would love to meet up to talk!
Have fun! It is the holidays, so relax! Networking can be stressful, but it is the holidays. Don’t get sloppy and become the life of the party, be open and charming, and enjoy yourself!
Remember that networking isn’t a formal job interview that you have to prep and practice for. Networking is a great way to jump-start your job search for 2017 and get ahead of the curve.
Happy Holidays from your friends at Planet Interactive!