Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Let's talk about networking

I suppose everyone thinks that after several months of searching for a position (any opportunity) one develops a feel for the process. Probably, but realistically, probably not, as it is a really complex process. If you have searched for a viable, money-earning position you have the understanding to enter into a discussion with me on this process. If you have searched for a viable, money-earning position in this down economy, and have landed an interview that makes you an expert in job searching.

Absolutely important in this process is the artof networking. When I say networking I am definitely not talking about Linked In, or Facebook. They do have some good things going on there, and you may even get a Recruiter you meet there to take a copy of your resume (presumably to consider you for a job they are acting upon). Truth be told, they are not really doing that at all, they are gathering resumes to hope they can find one perfect fit in the pile. In most cases they won't be successful either, as the perfect fit usually does not exist. So, who is finding those jobs and getting hired?

It is networking, but it is more like the old days of 'who do you know.' If you can draw upon a friend with a named contact in the internal recruiter (think HR) industry, you have found a strong first step. A lot of scam artists talk about the 'hidden job market.' They don't have any more access to that market than you or I. They will take your money and promise to get you in "there" -- there being the receptionists desk. You have to get past that receptionist. So, what I am saying is save your money.

The best way to get access to a real job opening, and stand any chance of landing the job is to have someone on the inside pushing your resume onto the desk of the hiring manager. That takes muscle, and that muscle usually comes from someone with credibility inside the company. A friend has loads of contacts in many different companies. He is a former CFO, and knows a bunch of recruiters (internal and external) by name. They owe him a few favors, and he is willing to help you get a hand up into the inner well of the company so you can get a shot at a job. This takes a lot of set-up, and a lot of nourishing the system to keep it working. But, this is the system that will land you the good job.

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