I’m afraid of making a major blunder while networking. What mistakes should I avoid?
The Career Doctor responds:
To avoid networking disaster steer clear of these behaviors:
- Asking your network contacts for a job instead of asking them for advice and referrals. No one wants to be put on the spot and asked for a hob but most people are flattered to be asked for advice.
- Failing to thank your network contacts. Always thank your contacts for even the smallest thing they do to help you. An e-mail is fine but handwritten notes are even nicer and for really helpful people consider something special like flowers or a lunch invitation.
- Forgetting that networking should be for MUTUAL benefit. Think about helping and supporting your contacts as much as possible. Give them referrals send them helpful articles let them know if they hear of appropriate job openings.
- Spending all your time networking online through sites like Twitter Facebook and LinkedIn at the expense of the far more effective face-to-face networking. Social media is important for establishing an online presence but face-to-face is much more likely to result in a job.