The growing number of job losses have crushed the spirits of numerous American workers, leaving many to wonder if and when they will be able to put the pieces back together. But there is a way to overcome the sense of gloom: Rally together a strong, effective network of professional and personal contacts that you can use to your advantage when you look for a job. In other words, you need your own team of cheerleaders.
Here’s how to find them:
- Start with yourself. When building a team of network contacts or cheerleaders, it is important that you assess your own worth first. You must have a clear understanding of your strengths and weakness so you will be effectively able to market yourself to your network contacts and prospective employers.
- Take inventory. Determining who you already know and how they can help you this. The possibilities include current and former co-workers, professional association members, and family and friends.
- Create a concrete plan. A networking action plan can help you build up your network. One possible goal: Pledge to network with two people per day for one week. This gives you a total of 10 new contacts in just one work week. Remember it is not just who you know, but who knows what you know.
- Put yourself in the right places. People don’t just gather at “networking events.” Among the places you can meet new cheerleaders: Airports, parties, family reunions, supermarkets, banks, etc.
- Keep your eyes open. Cheerleaders can turn up just when you least expect it.
- Stay positive. Any negativity can be detected by those you meet.
Image credit, nazarethman, via iStock