Here's the dirty secret no one wants to acknowledge about finding your next gig: Who you know still matters. And now in 2021, with almost 25% of people working remotely, it probably matters more than ever before.
In 2016, LinkedIn influencer Lou Adler conducted a survey of approximately 3,000 professionals and he found that 85% of all new careers are discovered by networking. And for better or worse, this hasn't changed in the years since. Even during times when unemployment declines, networking is key.
You’ve heard about the importance of networking. You may have even been to one (or several) of those awkward professional mixers designed to increase your exposure to other professionals in your field. Good times.
Even if you’re tiptoeing around the job hunt, there are some small things you can do every day to increase your visibility and make sure that you stay out there and open to new opportunities.
5 Little Career Moves to Make ASAP
The trick about networking for a new job is that you may be good at every little thing on our list — or not. You’ll have to gauge your time and interest in stepping outside the comfort zone to try new things. On the one hand, it’s always good to practice new skills, but on the other, if you’re terrible at face-to-face networking that first impression could forever skew your entry into a new career.
That’s why it’s always good to sit down and have a good think about your job skills and how to highlight them in ways to make you more appealing. Even if you're an introvert.
- Start Talking to People - Everywhere
The conversation doesn’t have to be in elevators, actually right now you probably shouldn't even be in an elevator with someone. The point is that you’re engaging others by opening yourself up to communicating. But you never know if your neighbor or that acquaintance at the dog park has a job opening that might be just right for you. Make sure you're ready to connect — just in case. This doesn't even have to be in person. Maybe it's time to try networking by sliding into someone's DMs?
- Update Your Profiles
We're big fans of funny taglines that sum up your experience on your LinkedIn profile, but most importantly — make sure your headline is up to date. This is often your first impression in the digital world. Which of course, should then lead you to change that old thumbnail photo and outdated job list. Then, take that mindset to other outlets - like Behance, even Instagram, or Slack groups.
- Publish or Perish
Posting regularly on LinkedIn or another social media network is a great way for you to wag a flag saying, “I’m here. I’m smart. Pick me.” If you write, publish it. If you find a great article relevant to business, share it. LinkedIn is more than a big database; it is a networking powerhouse.
- Stay in Touch
Relationships atrophy — the truth about networking is that it works if you work it. As you get older and your responsibilities mount, it gets harder to find energy to stay in touch with “your people.” Chances are, your people are struggling with the same problem. Make the effort and you never know how it might change your life. We're all bad at this one so a little chat can go along way.
- Participate and Get Involved
From Creative Mornings digital meet ups to volunteering, every city and every profession has plenty of activities for you to get involved in. Even if you’re so busy you can only devote one night a month, find a worthwhile club, group, or volunteer activity and get out there. Just do it.
Here’s another tip — when was the last time you reached out to the team at Artisan Talent? You have a ready pool of talent scouts standing by just waiting for your call. Their advice will be an invaluable asset to your 2021 job search.
Looking for more job hunt and networking tips? Check out some of our other recently published blogs:
- Networking by Sliding Into Someone's DMs
- Networking for Introverts
- How to Get the Most from Working with a Recruiter
- Interviewing and Onboarding Remotely: How to Get Your Dream Job from Behind the Screen
*Note: this blog was originally published in February 2018 and updated in January 2021.*