Tag Archives: how to get a job

Creative Networking to Land a Job

Creative Networking Can Help You Get the Job

Networking is one of the best ways to find a job or jump-start a business that’s stuck in a rut. Yet, many people don’t do it because they find it intimidating or scary.

If this describes you, here’s a tip: make it fun. There are many ways to network, especially if you’re willing to get a little creative.

I applied this advice to my own business in 2009, and as a result landed a portion of a large government contract that would boost my company’s annual revenue to more than $4 million in 2010, up from less than $100,000 in previous years.

Frustrated with the hiring downturn brought on by the Great Recession, I figured a networking event would be a terrific way to build new contacts for my business. But to shake things up a little, I invited friends, acquaintances and clients, and staged the event as a cocktail party in my home.

Inviting a mix of friends and clients, and holding the event in my home, helped me stand out. The personal setting also allowed my guests to feel more connected and more invested in the success of each other.

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates 70 percent of all jobs are found through networking. Here are some of my other favorite tips for using business networking to the greatest advantage:

  • Join a professional association and build relationships with key leaders within the organization. Recruiters often contact local chapters of professional organizations to learn which members are looking for jobs or wanting to make a change.
  • Join the local chapter of your university’s alumni association. There’s an automatic instant bond between people who attended the same school. This is a great choice for people who are normally shy about going to networking events.
  • Volunteer your time. Whether it’s working with a charity where you have a personal interest, or on a pro bono project within your regular line of work, you’ll gain a feeling of fulfillment and new connections who may yield returns down the road.
  • Attend networking events. Find out about them by conducting a web search. After the event, send a hand-written follow up note to people whose business cards you collected during the mixer.
  • Use social networking. Expand your social network when you meet someone at a networking event by connecting with them on LinkedIn.
  • Get involved in the Southwest Job Network. The Southwest Job Network is an all-volunteer program that meets twice a month in Phoenix. You can get involved by participating as a volunteer, attending their events or by doing both.
  • Offer to sponsor a meeting of your local professional association. Meeting sponsorships help the group defray costs and gets you in front of your target audience.
  • Host your own networking event, either in your home or in a restaurant meeting room.

One of the easiest ways to find a new job or a build a new business connection is simply to bring up the topic in conversation.

Don’t be shy about talking about the fact you’re looking for a job. Once you start doing that, you may be surprised. Your best chance of finding a position is knowing someone who can connect you to someone else within a company.

[stextbox id="grey"]For more information, visit www.southwestrecruiting.com.[/stextbox]

Write a Resume Correctly.

Resumes Have A New Look — Is Yours Outdated?

Today’s job market is scarce, and just as times have changed so has the way a resume is destined for either an interview or the round filing cabinet.

According to Michael Wong, Director of Career Services for the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University, “The best information to include is relevant experience, skills, education and contact information.”

It’s all about branding — selling yourself, and the following are ways to brand yourself without shooting yourself in the foot.

Bold Your Name, Leave Out the Title

Add value to your name; bold your name, and leave out a title. People are more likely to hire you for your skills or values rather than your title. For example, instead of saying “Megan Smith, Journalist,” consider putting “Megan Smith, Determined Contributor” as a value. This tells the person reading your resume exactly what you will do for the company. If your name is hard to forget, you have a better chance of getting hired.

Emphasize With Email

Only include a professional email address and cell phone number for contact. Most companies don’t send letters anymore. Instead, they‘ll email or call you. If you don’t have a professional email, create one.  For instance, bigleggs@yahoo.com is not going to get the best reaction from a perspective employer. A simple email with your first and last name will do fine.

No Objectives

Objectives are nice to have but not needed on a resume. It tells what you are trying to accomplish, but doesn’t say who you are. No one wants to hire someone who is trying to become a journalist. They want the person that is a journalist.

For instance, if you meet someone that says they’re trying to be a good friend instead of saying they are a great friend, a red flag would tell you to dispose of them quickly. You want your resume to end up on the desk of the person who will hire you. Objectives keep you from that desk and into human resources, where it is filed for a position someone is aiming to be someday.

“Objectives can be a waste of space and vague,” said Wong. “They can also be taken the wrong way, and the company can think you are telling them what you want the company to be.”

Instead of objectives, list skills in which you are proficient. Employers are looking for a person who can do things with little training, so be truthful. If you aren’t that great in HTML, don’t put it on your resume. It is okay to mention it in an interview later.

“I would like to see a summary of qualifications instead of objectives,” said Wong.

Work History

After skills, include your work history. Employers want to know what type of experience you have, how long and how dependable you are. Longevity with a company stands out and relays you are looking for a place to remain. Don’t put every job you ever worked on your resume; put the jobs that are relevant to the position you are applying for.

On a resume, a job title doesn’t mean much in today’s society; instead, give a description. For example:

Instead of writing:  Technical Support Leader, Blue Bird and Bell

Write: Updated WordPress with HTML and JavaScript, Blue Bird and Bell

Education

Next, put your education. Don’t include every college or high school you ever went to. Include only the institutions in which you received a degree. If you have a GPA less than 3.5, don’t include the GPA. List the degrees you’ve received and the skills that were gained. By doing this you will create a clear picture of the person they are looking for.

Less Is More

The less information provided, the better. Never give anyone a reason to question your abilities in a position. And never include a picture, unless, of course, you are applying for a modeling job.

Social Media

In today’s society, a resume isn’t the only way to get to know a person. Companies are searching Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. If you have an account with any of the three multimedia powerhouses, be sure that they will review the type of person you say you are and the person they see on the site.

Delete party pictures with alcohol, nude or obscene pictures and comments that may be inappropriate. Corporations find a person shows their true self when they aren’t being managed, and this is how they find out that information in today’s world.

Be positive when submitting your resume, and remember your goal is to impress, connect and get hired.

Good luck!