Thursday, July 28, 2016

Effective Alumni Networking in a Job Search

Looking to change careers, but all you’ve got is an alumni contact list full of people in your current industry?  If you’re going to look for a job within your corporate alumni network, it’s best to approach the right people.

 If you share an alumni at ABC incorporated, then you should target your approach to whomever you are appealing to. Don’t ask them to do something they can’t do, and don’t expect any more than what they tell you. If you’re in IT, for example, you wouldn’t approach a corporate alumnus on the sales team for hiring opportunities. Here are a pair of helpful tips to make your efforts get you more noticed in today’s competitive jobs market:

Don’t come off as desperate or transactional


Think about it. You can typically smell desperation from a mile away. If the first thing you open up with in your job search is your inability to find a job, then you’re doing it wrong. Bring something to the table, even if it's just lunch. [Click to Tweet] Your alumni base already knows that you’re reaching out for one reason or another, especially if you didn’t know them well at your host organization. At least offer to take them out for chance to discuss business so that there is no misconception on what the point of the meeting is. Some prefer to get straight to business, and a meeting may not be necessary. Either way, present value in exchange for the value you aim to gain from them.

Be genuine in your approach


This ties into the last point. State your intentions clearly from the start. While there exists a need for general networking amongst your alumni base, when looking for a job it is best to make it known early on. If you’ve properly networked before the need for a career transition arose, then you’ve done it right. For the rest of you, it’s time to microwave some relationships. Ask about the company culture, the needs of the department you’re looking into, and anything else you can’t find out on the company website.

The job search is difficult, especially if your skillset is specialized after years in an industry. [Click to Tweet] Finding that fit can be made easier by properly utilizing the resources afforded to you by your alumni network. At Insala, we try our best to bridge the gap between people by way of technology backed solutions.

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