Friday, June 7, 2013

How To Network Without Being Annoying

This article was originally posted on the NPT Jobs Career Center

When it comes to the job search, it’s not so much what you know that is important but who you know. That doesn’t mean your career skills aren’t important — far from it — but it is true that it is much harder to get a job without a good group of networking contacts. Getting these contacts is the easy part; it’s a little harder to find a way to stay in touch with them without getting on their nerves.

Using online tools like Facebook or LinkedIn, job seekers are able to better keep in touch with the contacts they have developed over time. I can be argued that it’s too easy though, when you consider that these people do have lives and don’t necessarily want to be contacted every single day. So how do you find a balance between staying in touch and being a pest? It’s a hard act to pull off but, by following the following four tips, you can rest assured knowing that you are not alienating your best job resources:

  • Determine which social media site your contacts are most comfortable receiving messages and use that to your advantage. Occasionally commenting on their statuses or sending a quick message is a good way to remind them you still exist without rubbing them the wrong way.
  • Don’t feel pressured to spend hours with your contacts. An occasional coffee meeting or a quick lunch is a good way to keep you fresh in their minds should a good job opportunity come up for you.
  • Do you have a connection who could potentially help but you don’t get along? Don’t try to force a connection with this kind of person as not only will it not help you, it will probably make you more annoying to them. Stick to networking with people with whom you have a great relationship.
  • Nobody likes a one-sided relationship except for the person who is benefiting from it. Make sure that you are doing things for your contacts and avoid talking only about yourself when you chat. Ask how they are doing or what they are doing with their lives.

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