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Network Your Way To A New Career Position Network Your Way to a New Career Position

One of the most effective ways to move ahead in your career is by making use of your personal network.   Whether you are between jobs and are looking for your next position, or are currently employed and are looking to take the next step in your career plan, knowing how to network effectively can help you reach your goals.

You're probably already aware that most job openings aren't published in the newspaper - and many aren't published anywhere at all.  So how does one find out about these hidden opportunities? How do those "hidden" jobs get filled if they aren't advertised?  The answer is word of mouth.

When your aunt Sally calls you to tell you that your cousin's best friend heard about a job you might be interested in, that's networking.  When you get your girlfriend's sister an interview at one of  your client's companies, that's networking too.  Networking is just a fancy word for people helping other people out.

Reach Out to the People who Know and Like You

Even if you haven't consciously been trying to build a personal network, you still have one.  It consists of  your friends, family, current an former colleagues and mentors. Reach out to these folks and let them know what you're up to.  If you're looking for a new position, let them know specifically what you are looking for.  Your uncle Herb may have only a vague understanding of what you do for a living, but give him the details anyway.  Remember, everybody knows somebody.  Your uncle Herb knows you and wants you to succeed, so by all means let him.  Besides, you never know who he'll be playing golf with this Sunday.

In addition to personal friends and associates, you will want to develop relationships with recruiters who specialize in your field of work.  A good way to get your name in front of recruiters is to post your resume on major job boards.

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