Happy New Year!

Welcome to 2015!

By all accounts, this looks to be a good year for the job hunter. The economy is growing and adding jobs. People are moving between jobs and creating opportunities. The new year means that companies are opening new budgets with new positions. The new year also brings a new energy as companies shake off the holidays and get back to business.

So, are you ready to greet this new year? Have you refreshed your resume and included quantified accomplishments? Do you have your elevator speech down pat? Have you updated your target list and know where you want to go?

Over the next few weeks I plan to go back to basics and make sure you have the tools to capitalize on the opportunities that will start opening up on Monday.

For this post, I want to implore you to network. The vast majority of jobs that are filled are never advertised. They don’t show up on Indeed or CareerBuilder, they don’t appear on industry job boards, and they may not even be posted on company websites. They get filled because the hiring manager (or HR) already knows someone who is qualified.

Now, if you are sitting at home scanning the want ads, you might feel that is unfair. If they don’t advertise the job and give you the chance to apply, how will you ever get a new job? If that is how you feel, get over it. Put yourself in the hiring manager’s shoes. If you have a choice of advertising, screening, interviewing and then hiring a stranger (all of which might take 8-12 weeks), versus hiring a fully qualified candidate that was referred to you by a friend and whom you had coffee with two weeks ago, which would you prefer?

If you want to find a good job, you must network. You need to tell everyone you know your story and ask them to refer you to people they know and repeat the process over and over. You are not asking these people to hire you. You are asking them to spend a few minutes, to get to know you and your abilities, and to suggest to you other professionals with whom you can do the same. Through that process, you will meet someone who has a job to fill and who feels you are the person to fill that job.

Believe in yourself, believe in the process, and be ready to get back to work.

If you want more advice on how to network, how to write a resume, or just how to find a job, check out I’m Fired?!? A Business Fable about the Challenges of Losing One Job and Finding Another. Click here for more details.



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