March 20, 2019
By Carl Hourihan
We all know the adage of ‘it’s who you know not what you know’, although this isn’t 100% true all the time, it certainly helps when you’re trying to start a new career! Emily Taubenblatt lead our workshop, helping participants to gain the skills needed to meet and connect with the people you need to know for starting a new career.
Emily helped everyone have a better understanding of elevator pitches, when to use them (particularly events like ours at GreenHomeNYC), and what needs to be in one:
- Relevant points.
- What you can do?
- What you want to do.
- What you want from the person you’re talking to.
As we all know, companies are dependent on openings and hiring cycles, which don’t always line up with our own schedules. One way to get your foot in the door before the hiring cycle begins is to set up an informal interview, get coffee or lunch with someone from the company, pick their brains, and most importantly listen to what they have to say! Listening is the most important part of any conversation and when job searching this holds especially true. Let them talk and you should ask relevant questions; eventually they will ask you to tell them about yourself, and that’s when you should begin to talk and bring up your intentions.
There are a few rules to follow for any conversation you have while job searching. Give the person you’re talking to your card at some point during the conversation, if you don’t have one yet there are several websites that will make them for you for free. Most importantly, follow up within 24 hours of the conversation. The follow up time is a sliding scale: if it was an informal interview, within 24 hours is fine, if it was a job interview, follow up immediately!
Another useful way to expand your network is with LinkedIn. Be sure to keep your LinkedIn up to date as this can act as an informal online resume. Ensure that your bio is filled out and reflects the type of work you are trying to get into. If you’re unsure of what you want to do, highlight your skills and keep it general. If you’re targeting a job, make your bio reflect what that job is looking for. Your bio is also a good place for your elevator pitch! You should connect with everyone you know through LinkedIn, using other social media as a guide can be helpful with this.