The pressures and stress that come from job hunting are pretty relatable whether you’re fresh out of college, starting a new career path, or trying to bounce back into the market after a layoff. At the Girls United Summit, we’re all about helping others network and find that dream job through our speed networking workshop.
Finding that perfect job, especially for Gen-Z’ers, can seem a little intimidating and frustrating for those still maneuvering how tedious it can be to create those networks and cultivate relationships to get hired. Job hunting is indeed a job in itself, and GU wants to be a tool to help those in search of standing out and landing that dream job!
Here are six tips to help you network anywhere, including the GU Summit speed networking workshop in Atlanta on November 5, 2022. The Summit will also stream live on ESSENCE Studios. For more information and to RSVP, check out https://girlsunited.essence.com/gusummit2022/.
Often many of us are afraid to reach out and connect with others because of the fear of rejection, but you never know what opportunities may appear by simply putting yourself out there. “Do not be afraid to initiate or follow up. People get busy, so it is ok to follow up, but approach all conversations with genuine warmth, patience and kindness,” said Prerika Agarwal, Executive Life & Career Coach.
Be Genuine In Connecting
With the power of social media, it is easy to follow someone and pick their brain on how they carved their path in their career. “Have meaningful conversations with people, take a genuine interest and ask questions about them, their role, and their company rather than talking about yourself or what you need or want. Genuine connections will be more fruitful than making someone feel they are being pitched at,” said Human Resources Consultant, Sally Bendtson.
Get Straight To The Point
“Have a clear, engaging story that lets people quickly know who you are and what you are all about,” Agarwal said. The less fluff, the better regarding the job-hunting experience. Many times, recruiters are extremely busy and need to engage quickly. “Make it easy for people to understand who you are without being too wordy.”
Utilize Your LinkedIn
As a professional, LinkedIn should be your best friend. Being up-to-date and engaging with your connections is vital when searching and applying for various positions. “Make sure you follow up on every connection using LinkedIn, send a personalized connection request, and reference something you spoke about. Or, if they offered to help, thank them for their offer, so they have a reminder. Make sure your LinkedIn profile is up to date before you go networking so they can see the correct details if they look you up,” Bendtson said.
Mindset Is Key
Rejection and being ghosted can be tough, especially if you are so close to getting that job, but it’s essential to remain calm. “A lot of [people] feel scared off if they don’t get the response they want when networking. However, remember that people are busy and if they respond and it is not what you wanted, remember that it is not personal or doesn’t mean anything about you. Don’t get hung up on people who aren’t responsive, and stay consistent and motivated,” Agarwal said.
Set A Specific Goal
Regarding networking events, things can seem extremely overwhelming and intimidating especially if there are many people. It’s important to make some mental goals before attending any networking event so that you are not overthinking or in your head about meeting new people. “[Give] yourself a target as to how many people you will speak to at any event you go to so that you push yourself to network,” Bendtson said.
About Kenyatta: Kenyatta Victoria is an entertainment and culture reporter passionate about music, pop culture, and marginalized stories. She has bylines in publications such as Chicago Reader, INSIDER, Girls United, TransLash Media, and the Chicago Tribune.