Let me explain how critical it is to cultivate relationships or relationship building is to job search. Are you open to using social media marketing in your job search? Some people understand the basics of relationship management. However, not many mastered the art of cultivating relationships throughout their lifetime that produce benefits for both parties.
How do you cultivate relationships?
Ideally, you have done this throughout your life. You may need to enhance those relationship building skills. Whether you are in an active job search or not, it is always time to practice.
Let me explain first that relationship building is always a two-way street. You can’t expect people to be willing to give to you if you are always the one taking. Being a giver comes very naturally to some people, less easily to others. Dig your well before you’re thirsty by Harvey Mackay is one of my favorite books because he explains this concept so well.
Cultivate relationships with what you already enjoy
- Do you like fishing? When you plan your next fishing trip, think about who you know who loves fishing too. Invite someone you usually don’t fish with but someone with whom you would enjoy spending time.
- Are you a golfer? Expand your horizons and join a league with people you don’t know.
- Do you like to volunteer? Select organizations that are very active and spend time actually getting to know the other volunteers, as well as board members.
- Do you belong to a church? Look for opportunities to serve. Your church always needs more people to help with projects and you will expand your network.
- Do you have a dog? Look for opportunities to socialize with other dog lovers.
- Do you like to write? See if there is a writing club in the area that meets regularly.
- Do you enjoy reading? Visit the library and learn what opportunities they have for book clubs, projects, or events.
- Do you like to teach? Communicating your skills or expertise to groups or classes will expose you to new people.
- Do you like to travel? Join a tour group to a destination you would enjoy. You will meet other people in the group and expand your network.
Your strategy when you cultivate relationships must be honest.
You can’t go into any of the above with a “what’s in it for me?” attitude. You have to genuinely enjoy doing things with other people. Much of the time, people find that they are stuck in a rut and there is no way out but with a little effort, you can find many ways to interact with others on your terms, all while doing something you love.
I help job seekers transform their resumes and job search strategies in interactive, solution-driven strategic planning sessions. Learn more.