CAREER DEVELOPMENT / MAY. 05, 2014
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How To Build Your Professional Network During The Holiday Season

networking

During the holiday season, the last thing on the mind of a professional is a new job. However, research indicates that new job postings increase during holiday periods, particularly over summer break and the last two months of the year.

Is it worth looking into your network during this time while everyone is relaxing and taking time off? The answer could be yes. If you think that companies don’t hold interviews during holiday seasons, think again.

Networking During The Holiday Season

It’s very common for CEOs and top professionals to hold gatherings for their network during the holiday season. This can be a great time to socialize and grow your own personal network. It is important to remember that these parties are not like conventions. Clients, alumnus, and other notable individuals who are in attendance are there to unwind and have fun. Therefore, it is not recommended to open directly with lines pertaining to possible job openings.

Instead, enjoy the party and make it a point to have engaging conversations that your possible new contacts will remember. During holiday events, you may not have many opportunities to talk about job openings. However, that doesn’t mean you won’t be needing your business cards.

Depending on the type of event or gathering, it is best to have a hard and digital copy available to avoid idle gaps in conversations. A smooth way of passing your cover letter and resume is by keeping a copy of it in your phone as an attachment. Then you can casually send a personal email through your mobile device with the updated application, should a conversation lead to the possibility of new job posts.

Don’t Forget Your Old Contacts

The holiday season can be a great time to keep in touch with your old contacts, the ones you haven’t seen in a long time. This could be previous workmates who left the company you’re currently working in, or an old classmate during your college years. The gesture of catching up is always rewarding and can give you new insights on what’s happening in other parts of the industry.

Even though everyone has their guard down during holiday parties, it is still best to exercise patience and have meaningful conversations before talking about the latest scoop in the industry. The holiday season isn’t an excuse to forget about your professional network. If you play your cards right, a new opportunity may be on the way.

Thinking Long-Term

Meeting the right people is only a small part of the networking equation. One must also nurture the new connection before being able to openly talk about insider tips and job leads. 

With a long-term perspective, the most essential part of the networking process is building trust. Ultimately, this can be done by being reliable. Setup a casual lunch and show up on time. Don’t send a delayed or late reply by email or SMS. You don’t have to necessarily do huge favors or tasks for people to increase trust. Sending invites out to your newly acquired network on a consistent basis is a non-intrusive way of establishing your presence.

How are you building your professional network during the summer break? Share your experience with us below.

 

Article Sourced: consultingfact

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