You've most likely heard the cliché: "It's not what you know; it's who you know." Well, when you're searching for a new job, what you know is pretty important, but who you know -- or who you get to know -- can be just as important, if not more. Career specialists and veteran job seekers alike will probably tell you that networking is one of the best ways to land a job. And, there are myriad ways to do so.
When you start looking for a job, contact friends and trusted professionals in your field to let them know you're on the hunt. Consider giving them your personal business cards or a copy of your résumé in case they run into someone who's searching for a candidate like you. Also ask them to serve as professional references or to let you know if the companies they work for are hiring.
Another excellent way to network is to use an online professional networking site like LinkedIn.com. This way you can not only connect with friends and colleagues, but also former co-workers, local employers and friends of friends.
Some other networking routes you might want to consider include:
- Job fairs
- Alumni groups
- Professional societies and associations
- Social activities
- Local business community events
Our next tip is one you might not have considered.