Hugo Sandberg was our speaker on February 15. As a former Hudson Job Search client, he has firsthand knowledge of the power of networking when it comes to finding a job. Throughout his career, Hugo worked for many enterprise and mid-sized organizations. Today, he runs a consulting agency, HFS Solutions.
During his 27-year career, Hugo shared that he found many of his jobs through networking. He suggested that you should never give up, be transparent about your job loss, and most of all, use technology to keep track of your networking contacts.
Even during this time of COVID-19, Hugo notes that networking meetings may be shorter (ask for 15 minutes) and conducted over the phone or via videoconferencing.
Below is valuable information about how to start your networking list, prepare for the call, a sample marketing plan, and free technology options available to you.
Hugo shared with us a list of places you can start networking. He also suggested you once you have developed your plan, you divide them into A, B, and C connections, focusing most of your time on the “A” Connections.
- Former managers
- Former co-workers
- Former teachers
- Professional associations
- Service clubs (i.e., Rotary, Kiwanis)
- Faith-based organization
- Sports Clubs
- College Alumni
- Family, friends, and neighbors
- Real estate broker
- Job search groups
- Speaking engagements
Before Placing a Call or Sending an Email
Once you have your networking list in place, but before you call anyone, make sure your resume, LinkedIn profile, and marketing plan (see sample below) are complete. Then, answer these questions:
- How can this person help in my job search?
- Have I researched the company and industry?
- Based on my research, is this company a good fit for expanding my network?
- Is my 30-second commercial ready?
Due to the inability of meeting face-to-face, ask for only 15-minutes of their time, preferably through Facetime or Zoom. Seeing each other has a better chance of making a stronger person-to-person connection which can instill more confidence in the networker to recommend you to their contacts.
Please remember, above all else, you are not asking the person for a job, but rather asking if they know of anyone who may be looking for someone like you. Hugo recommended that you ask for AIR – Advice, Information, or Referrals when sharing your call objective.
Once you have the meeting, connect with them on LinkedIn, send your Marketing Plan, and confirm your appointment one business day before it.
Once connected on LinkedIn, mine their contacts for people that might be beneficial for you to connect with.
Once on the call, and after you review your Marketing Plan, share with the person you perused their LI contacts and felt that Person A, B, and C might be a valuable connection. Assess their body language at this point. If it isn’t favorable (i.e., they might feel it’s stalking), move on.
Sample Marketing Plan
Technology Options to Keep Your Networking Contacts Organized
Hugo feels it is essential to use technology to keep your contacts organized. The fields he suggests you set up are:
- Their Name
- Their Company
- Their Title
- The Date You Met with Them
- The Date You Sent a Thank you note
- The Referrals Given – list them
- Connected on LinkedIn (Y/N)
- Put their contact info in your phone (Y/N)
- Follow up notes
Hugo said you should find one tool and stick with it throughout your entire search. I would suggest you use a cloud platform; that way, if your computer is unavailable to you or crashes, your data is backed up.
- Microsoft Excel (backed up to OneDrive, their cloud platform)
- Google Sheets (available through Google Drive)
- Jibber Jobber (25 contacts available for free, beyond that payment required)
- Zoho (free Customer Relationship Management software with unlimited contacts)
- MailChimp (store up to 2,000 contacts for free)
Lost Your Job? Hudson Job Search is Here to Help
We have free, bi-monthly Zoom meetings (the first and third Monday of each month on essential job search and career topics. If you know of anyone unemployed or underemployed, please encourage them to contact us to receive information about upcoming events.