Your University Name    the Competitive Edge

with Nathan Perez

Networking isn't as tough as you think. In this video, Executive Career Job Search Coach and the author of 20 Minute Networking Meeting, Nathan Perez, summarizes the basics of the “Networking” meeting covering:

  • What is the networking meeting?
  • Why is it important?
  • Who should we network with?
  • Why don't we network?

What is the networking meeting?

A networking meeting is a brief meeting to obtain information to achieve your goals. There are professional and personal reasons to network:
  • Professional reasons include job search, business development, sales, marketing.
  • Personal reasons include make friends, learn, have fun.

  • Objectives of Professional Networking Meetings
    • Information about a company, industry or functional area, career development strategies
    • Names to expand your strategic connections
    • Gain an Evangelist. An evangelist in this context is someone who is willing to help you identify opportunities or additional connections (e.g., give your resume to somebody or maybe even introduce you the other people who can help).

    Why have networking meetings? Why Not just Apply For Every Job Online?

    Remember: People hire people-not technology, not LinkedIn, not any Job website. In the end, it is people who hire people. Here are the reasons:
    • U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics states that 70% of all jobs are filled without being posted. If you are looking to become a company leader, that statistic jumps up to 80%.
    • Networking is becoming more important to companies. Companies are looking for trust and efficiency. Everyda, companies are learning how important a cultural fit is to the organization. They are learning that a good culture and hiring people who fit that culture improves overall business productivity.
    • Healthy working culture is what makes the workplace enjoyable. It draws top talent in a creative environment that people want to return to everyday. And that is responsible for people working better together. The more productive and efficient, the more it impacts the bottom line.
    • Healthy Working Culture = More Productive and Efficient Workflow

    How does this relate to your networking meetings?

    Like you, hiring managers and recruiters use their own network to find a match for the hiring needs. And the question that is typically asked when they begin a search is “Do you know of someone who could do this job?” Networking plays a fundamental role in searching for qualified candidates on the hiring side.

    What Hiring Managers do?
    • The hiring process takes a lot of time: Finding, Vetting, Interviewing and Hiring
    • Hiring managers look for efficient ways to manage their work load. The most efficient and powerful way to recruit and screen candidates is networking.
    • All recruiters and hiring managers network to fill jobs. Hiring manager trying to fill a job put the word out to their trusted network colleagues, family and friends because they trust them. Trust is a key factor in hiring process.
    < br /> Who should be networking?
    • All of us should be networking throughout our careers. Many companies are seeking a workforce with diverse experience in different organizations and industries.
    • Networking will play a major role in your career development.
    • The competition factor: According to the National Center of Education Statistic: nearly 1 million people will be awarded an MBA each year across the US. There is a lot competition in professional workforce.

    Who should we network with?
    • You already have a network. Start with your university. Try your career advisor. They are a great and under-used resourse. Career advisors deal with many students, so they may be reluctant to connect every student to their personal network. However they will have lots of ideas about where you should start:
      • Fellow members of academic clubs, internship peers, friends, neighbors, grads just ahead of you.
      • Bloggers, conference presenters, current or past co-workers, peers, alumni groups, professional networking groups, those you met at conferences or training.
      • Potential is all around you. Look inside and outside your profession.
    < Having a wide contact base is fundamental to your career development goals.

    Why don't we network?
    • Reasons are many:
      • Favor asking
      • Taking others' time
      • Name dropping and selling
      • Fear of seniority
      • Shy or introverted >/li>

    Networking is a skill that can be learned. It takes some practice and process.
    Why won't others cooperate with our advances to network?
    • The problems are:
      • Time/people are busy
      • The networking can carry negative connotation

    How do you get around that?
    • Try another word to describe networking and that word is 'research'. Letting your contacts know that you'll begin doing career research. And you would value their insight advice or opinions may make a big difference in the land of the networking meetings.
    • Feel free the swap these terms out whenever you feel appropriate. It is a particularly effective approach if you feel that the word networking is stalling your efforts.
    • Time is a Gift. All that said, the biggest deciding factor when it comes to a request for a networking meeting is time. Generally speaking, most professionals feel that they just simply don't have an extra hour to spare. Often that's caused by networking meetings that aren't focused, become social, don't have an agenda or take more time than promised.
    • How do we set up and manage a great networking meeting? The answer is simple: by learning how to assure efficient but productive 20-minute meeting.

Expert BIO
with Nathan Perez

Nathan is an award-winning author, executive search professional responsible for the "Where-and-How-To-Find qualified candidates" strategies for national search engagements and career consulting.

Nathan works with candidates themselves, helping them deconstruct and reconstruct entire career-histories and Resumes, and building candidates'' online LinkedIn presence from a hiring perspective. He is a frequent speaker on Networking and Using LinkedIn to Bring the Job Hunt to You.

Co-creator and co-author of the acclaimed and award-winning The 20-Minute Networking Meeting with Dr. Marcia Ballinger, Nathan combines job-search and networking in his career-coaching practice.