Karen Darrin

Let’s talk about networking & referrals — most of us dread networking like the plague but it is THE most essential way to find a new job. In fact, LinkedIn’s 2016 research states that 85% of jobs were filled by REFERRALS. Yes… 85%!

How do you get referrals? Create and maintain a robust network of people who know you and your professional brand. You are someone who doesn’t just take from people. You return the favor.

My referral rule is: Always reciprocate.

Here’s how it sounds:

“Hey, Bill – been reading your posts on LinkedIn and have an idea for you. Would you have time for a 10-min call? Looks like we have a lot in common.”

Or – “Hey Liz – looks like we both are job hunting. How about we chat and share strategies? Can we speak Monday, 3/13 at 4:30 Pacific?”

Or even – “Tom – I have been out of touch but am determined to reconnect with my network especially since I am looking for a new opportunity. You were a great mentor to me at ACME. Would you be willing to spend 10 minutes on phone and share more of your wisdom? When can we speak?”

Reciprocate – this is the key. If you need LinkedIn recommendations, offer your targeted person the same in return. If you need names of recruiters, share the connections you have. This is a simple concept but we forget about helping the other person, especially when we are scrambling for a job.

When do you look for referrals? ALL THE TIME. Don’t wait until you are unemployed. Networking is simple with the online tools we have. Reach out to people. Make it a habit. Don’t neglect this important investment in your career and, yes, t’s an investment. In fact, it is AS important as keeping your skills current and resume updated – I kid you not.

Connect with five people today. Begin right now and you will be surprised at how simple but important your network will become to your career.

If you’d like targeted support, schedule a complimentary 50-minute session with me.  Go to www.karendarrin.com

Now, go out there and make it a great week!