Here’s the thing with me and people. I’m an extremely shy person, shy to the point where I meet and get along with the co-workers and then never hear from them again because I would feel like a pest if I bug them about hookups with… oh I don’t know… people associated with a particular field in which I may find some advice and tips that would help me succeed in my job search. The trigger came to me when I did just that with my old co-workers by emailing them (since I don’t know their direct phone numbers, such as their cell ph#s) and then never get a reply back must have played the factor of me staying in my comfort zone and simply just doing my thing.
So, with a suggestion from an old good friend of mine, I attended the ProMatch Orientation this morning. to learn more about this highly-talked about networking program. Like all other CONNECT workshops, ProMatch is heavily loaded with info regarding the benefits of being a ProMatch member and all the services they offer. Being unemployed for some three years now1, I feel desperate. Job hunting is just way too much that if you think about it, job hunting is pretty much a job by itself, except you don’t get paid. It has come to the point where I no longer trust (internet) job boards, job fairs, and even recruitment/staffing agencies. You see an opening, you apply for it by sending in your resume, and then you get nothing.
With networking, we’re actually tapping in to what they call the “hidden job market.” Nowadays hiring managers now rely on connections with their employees and even their own personal networking (ie. family, friends, etc.) rather than just posting a job position up online and wait for some stranger to apply with the necessary requirements. If companies are doing this now rather than reaching out to the world through job boards and job fairs and employment agencies, then what’s the point of having job boards, job fairs, and agencies in the first place now?
Still, I’m not being skeptical or anything, but this whole comfort zone problem that I have of not being able to keep in touch with the people I knew from before. Maybe by joining ProMatch I’d be able to meet new people and simply just keep in touch with them. It’s easier that way. It’s not like I don’t want to contact my old co-workers for any job/industry tips, I just didn’t want to be a pest, if you get my drift.
After the ProMatch Orientation, I attended another workshop called Generating Job Leads. The workshop itself also focuses on networking as well, but this was more of something a lot more general than ProMatch. The orientation at ProMatch seems a bit more “direct” and personal, so to speak. Regardless, I still recommend attending both the orientation and this particular workshop.
Another cool “in” tool that job seekers should be utilizing is having a LinkedIn account. I have one (see link at the sidebar), but I haven’t really figured out how I’m going to utilize it. I learned that many companies are using LinkedIn to recruit people as well (another “hidden job market” tip), but I lack knowledge of actually utilizing LinkedIn. I guess this is the time where I should take a LinkedIn workshop, probably next week.
That’s about it about my thoughts regarding this rather powerful tip in job searching. Maybe if I can break through my comfort zone of shyness towards people, I may even do a better, more effective job when I get a job interview. More in-depth workshops for me then.
Till next time!
On the sidenote...
- well, as of June since I actually got something in April, even if it was only for three weeks [↩]