Feeling anxious about job security? Join the crowd! Here is the second of a three-part mini series by Career Coach Karen Begemann with recommendations to strengthen your position in your workpalce.
Recommendation #2: Hedge your bets by Getting and Staying Connected
Yesterday’s recommendation helps ensure you are fully fuelled to be a star performer: Know Your Why. Today it’s time to talk about getting and maintaining connections with people.
One of the top protective factors in career resiliency is having supportive relationships; people who believe in you; care about you. Think of someone who appears to have a solid career. Chances are they are also well-connected and seem to know how to leverage those relationships in a positive and productive way. You know that adage, It’s not what you know, it’s who you know?
Many of us shy away from networking as we believe we don’t have the time to do it or that it won’t yield the results we hope for. Part of the challenge is figuring out which connections are potentially the most productive and offer benefit to both parties. Mutual benefit is a key to the success of these relationships. Rather than thinking just about how someone could help you, think of what you can offer others. Asking the question, “How can I help? “ often can lead to opportunities you never knew existed. It also reinforces your value to the workplace.
What are the ways you like to connect with others professionally? Networking events, networking organizations, social media, attending industry events are but a few. However, one of the best ways is through informational interviewing. This is a meeting you arrange with an individual in an area or position you are interested in. It could be also be with someone at a management-level in an organization you are interested in. You ask questions to learn more about their occupation or about what a company looks for in the position. It is not about asking for a job but rather for information.
This method has benefits on several levels. One, it allows you to learn about a new direction, or to learn more about a position within your field. Secondly, it is a way to connect with potential future managers. You’ve given them a chance to meet you and form an impression of you. By staying in touch and maintaining key relationships like this you are sowing seeds for the future. If and when change is afoot, you now have a network of individuals who may be able to help you. For more information about Informational Interviews, click here.
Many people find that a combination of ways to connect with others tends to work best. How will you start to increase your connections?
Come back tomorrow for the third and final recommendation.
Karen Begemann has worked in the career development field for the past 10 years in government-funded employment programs, the corporate sector and in private practice as a Career Coach and Facilitator. Her passion professionally is helping people to connect with meaningful work. She provides a range of services including career exploration, job search (resume support, networking strategies and job interview coaching) and resiliency coaching (dealing with work related stress). Karen also specializes in working with professional moms who are planning to return to the workforce. She practices in Vancouver, BC and provides coaching services either in person or on the telephone. Karen can be reached at 604-828-5600 for a complimentary telephone session to determine an individual’s career coaching needs. For more information visit www.workmattersconsulting.com.
Photo Credit: Foreign and Commonwealth Office