Networking is proven to be an effective way for growth in your career, can lead to new jobs you wouldn’t have gotten otherwise, and is a skill that can be learned by anyone. Here are some strategies to grow your network and help you find a job in Canada:
Start by asking yourself, “would I buy what I’m selling?” If the answer is “no”, it’s time to figure out the top skills employers are looking for and make the necessary changes. These changes could be developing new skills through training or identifying and highlighting transferable skills you already have that align with what is in demand.
Even if you’re shy or introverted, you can develop networking skills by practicing. The trick is to be friendly and have a genuine interest in others.
Social media gives us access to a very large number of people around the globe. No matter where you are, you can easily connect with Canadian employers on social media. So, leverage this opportunity by building your social profile on platforms like LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter etc. to expand your network of people.
Focus on building meaningful, long-term relationships with people whose work or career you find interesting. A helpful analogy is to think of networking more as farming, which is a long-term commitment, and less as hunting, which is a short-term endeavor.
Because of COVID-19 many career events have become virtual. This means in most cases people can join from anywhere. Prepare as much as possible before joining these events so you can ask meaningful questions and to make the connections you need.
Think of networking as a two-way street – a give and a take. Don’t worry if you’re not sure how to add value to the relationship during the first meeting, however, it’s important to always be on the lookout for ways you can bring value to the other person. This could mean using your experience to provide insight where appropriate or connecting the person to someone that could help them.
While networking, focus less on impressing the person with your title and accomplishments and more on making sure that they fully understand the breadth of experiences and skills you bring to the table. Make sure that the message you’re trying to get across isn’t lost in your attempt to impress them.
When you meet people at networking events, whether they’re virtual or in person, be sure to follow up within 24-48 hours. In your email, reference highlights of your interaction with them and express an interest to continue the conversation.
Networking can be a daunting process but going into any opportunity with a plan to make a genuine connection with people whose work you are interested in makes it all the more easier.
If you want to learn more about how to find jobs in Canada and the immigration process as well, signup here for free to learn more!