An important part of finding new work is to network. Many statistics have shown that hiring managers actually prefer to hire people that were referred to them through employees or people in their own network. The idea is that a personal recommendation of someone takes away a bit of that risk when hiring someone. LinkedIn plays a major role in that, but is certainly not the only choice you have. Local meetups are another great source for networking and to make connections. These could be Meetups related to your profession, certifications, Alumni meetings, and other criteria that might apply to you.
An additional approach I would like to recommend is to think about creating or joining Mastermind groups. A Mastermind group provides a more intimate setup that allows for different advantages. When you go to certain networking events you might run into your competition – people who are the same level as you looking to apply for the same kind of positions you are applying for. “Bummer” might be your initial response, but think about how many jobs there could be and each person can usually only fill one. So, yes – these people are people you will be competing with, but what if you could actually team-up with a few of those?!
What are the benefits of a Mastermind Group?
Let’s look at this in more detail. Initially you consider these people your competition, but what would really happen if a few of you team-up?
Not every job posting is a good match for every Master Mind member. You might become aware of listings somebody else found, but did not apply for. Or a group member did apply for a job, but was rejected and the position has not been filled yet. These opportunities might be shared among group members.
Group members can discuss interview experiences and share what happened to them at certain companies. You will be surprised how different many interviews can turn out to be. That knowledge can help you to be less surprised and better prepared if you run into a similar situation at another job interview.
Mastermind group members could be a great source to do some mock interviews and to train/prepare for certain interview situations. Working with group members is also a better way to prep for interviews compared to friends and family. Friends and family members might not be as critical compared to someone you only know through the Mastermind group.
Being on the hunt for a new job can be quite frustrating. You know you got it and you know if you would just get the chance you could prove it to everyone, but unfortunately that’s not how things work. If your resume does not open the door, you’re out of luck. Being part of a Mastermind can help to curb the frustration. A good mastermind group sets goals for everyone and at the next meeting you will be hold accountable for these goals. This accountability can be very helpful to avoid frustration and even depression. You do not get the same pressure from being alone hunting for jobs and interviews. Being held accountable creates pressure to get some stuff done and to show results. This is less about showing that you succeeded in an interview, but to be actively looking for work, sending out resumes, to network, to learn a new skill, pretty much doing anything that eventually helps with landing a new job.
Coaches and Mentors
Masterminds are very well-known in the business world, but they also work great when searching for work, too. They are just not as common when it comes to job search. If you cannot build or join a mastermind, think about getting a mentor, or if you can afford it – hire a coach. Getting guidance and advice from somebody who is not in your shoes is worth a lot – especially if you think about the accountability aspect of this whole thing. A coach can help you with accountability and to put structure into what you do. A coach definitely has an outside look of where you are and where you want to be. Think of a coach as a fresh pair of eyes for you. It is somebody who can give you a different perspective on things. A coach usually costs money and that money would have to come out of your own pocket in most cases.
A mentor can help to open doors – meaning, eventually introduce to someone he or she knows that eventually has an opportunity for you. A mentor can also help you making the right choices with your career. A mentor provides guidance and advice and is also there to listen to you when you need it. Mentors can be found at the same company you work at, but also outside from that. Some companies have official mentorship programs which is definitely something you want to take advantage of if you have the chance.