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Networking for a Job: How to find the 80% of management jobs that are never advertised.
By Kempton Smith and Michael Williams

Most management jobs, as many as 80%, are never advertised. They are available through a process of personal networking. This consists of contacting everyone you have ever known, have ever met or have ever heard of, and using the networking multiplier.

The Networking Multiplier assumes that every contact can generate five more contacts for you if you use the right approach. It's like working from the top down on a pyramid. If each person you contact in turn contacts five more persons and each of these contacts five others, and so on, then after only five iterations you will have generated 5x5=25x5=125x5= 625x5= 3125x5=15,625 contacts. The numbers get to be quite impressive. These are idealistic, but nonetheless, somewhere in between 6 and 15,625 is doable starting with just one contact.

Wouldn't it be great to have about 15,000 people helping you find a job if you are unemployed, or looking for a better job. People means, "everyone plus many that are up to five times removed from the original contact."

Don't underestimate the power of networking.

One of the authors of this article had a simple list of contacts totaling in excess of 2000. He used to send Xmas/happy holiday cards to each of them every year, but the postage got too heavy and now he uses the internet, not as sophisticated as regular mail and a nice card, but it keeps the doors open except for those who change their e-mail address and forget to notify him.

Since starting to use the Internet e-mail the number has dropped from over 2000 to less than 1200. Still, it's an impressive number. He asks everyone he meets for his or her e-mail address. He jots off an E-mail within a day or so saying, "It was nice meeting you. Let's keep in touch." He follows up at certain times like the 4th of July "Happy 4th." This approach is good if you have a list and you should use it if you are ever looking for a job. But what if you suddenly find yourself unemployed and you have no list, or a very small list? You have an urgent full- time day-by-day job in front of you.

Start making several lists:

1. All your friends and acquaintances. Call them and explain your situation, ask if they know of or have heard of any opportunities that might suit your qualifications. Ask for referrals, their contacts that might be able to advise you on your career track. Ask for permission to use their names when contacting these other people. This is part of the multiplier method. Send him or her a copy of your resume. Ask him or her to pass it on to anyone who might know of an opportunity that would suit you.

2. All your business contacts that you have made through your present or past jobs. Include contacts such as trade reps, consultants, software salespeople, supply reps, printers, bankers, and any other outside people you can think of. Again, use the multiplier method (Always ask for some referrals). Send each of these people a copy of your resume and ask them to pass it on to anyone that might be interested.

3. All the co-workers, bosses, supervisors, and others that you can remember from past jobs, if they have moved on track them down and renew your contact. Don't forget the multiplier method. Refresh their memories with a copy of your resume and ask each to pass on a copy to anyone with contacts.

4. Go to your local library and make up a list of likely companies that might want to talk with you. Call them first and see if they will extend you an information interview and give you some advice on your career ideas. Follow it up with a letter, even if they turn you down thank them for taking the time to talk with you on the phone. Enclose a copy of your resume just in case they hear of some opportunity that might be a fit for you. Ask the person to whom you address the letter to feel free to pass your resume on to any opportunities that he or she might hear of that would suit you.

5. Also, while at the library, make a list of employment agencies and executive search firms in your area. (See the "Kennedy Publications" usually in hard copy with a red cover) Write to a select group of search firms and include a resume. There is a large green book entitled: "Directory of Human resource Executives."

Check your local newspaper for networking groups , visit with them and join those that are appropriate for you. Always have a supply of resumes on you when you leave your house. If you are over 40 locate the nearest 40- plus networking organization (Its national and its somewhere to go during the day if you need that kind of support. You shouldn't because you should be so consumed with your search that you don't have time to need any moral support).

Last, but not least, don't forget the networking power of the Internet. Log on and file your resume with all the big ones. Just follow the instructions on your screen for Amazon etc. See how you can qualify for mentoring help with your networking, letters, and resume.

You should be working 6 to 8 hours a day on the above networking methods. Follow up at least every 2 weeks. For those people who start avoiding you, send them a nice letter, explain some of your near successes. Tell them if they ever become involved in a major search you will be pleased to pass on your mailing lists of companies and search firms, and provide introductions to some key helpers. This usually rings some wakeup bells. Networking is a two-way game and you might be in my situation one day.

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For more free articles and information on job searching for managers, examples of and types of letters to use, what to say and when to say it, visit the Institute of Management Studies' web site at

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