When you’re looking for a job, everyone tells you to network.
Network! Network! Network!
That’s great advice, but it can be quite overwhelming and even intimidating.
A while back I was meeting with a young woman looking for her first job out of college. When I emphasized the importance of networking she said, “Everyone tells me to do that, but when I’m meeting with someone I don’t know what to say.”
I appreciated her candor, so I spent extra time helping her develop a networking agenda. After filtering out the noise and distractions, we realized there were only three things she needed to say in a face-to-face networking meeting. Likewise, your networking agenda can be as simple as these three items:
- Here’s who I am. Briefly describe yourself professionally.
- Here’s where I’m going. Describe your ideal job so the other person can visualize you being successful in the next phase of your career.
- Here’s how you can help. People want to help but usually they don’t know how. Give them a few simple things to do.
Organizing a networking meeting around these three points will give you the confidence you need to succeed.
As you move forward in your job search , you’ll also be making new friends and expanding your network of professional contacts.