Bob's Story: Using Networking to Your Advantage
When Bob lost his job, he didn’t realize how difficult finding a new one would be. Having worked at his previous company for over two decades, he didn’t even know where to start to find a new job. So he visited the employment resource center.
At the time, he was serving as a bishop. This presented an extra challenge, because often unemployed members receive the support and counsel they need from their bishop.
One of the first things he did when he lost his job was to tell his ward. He didn’t want to keep it a secret. He wanted to find a job, and he knew that he needed as much help as he could get. He said, “If you don’t tell people you’re looking, they’re not going to be able to help you.”
Ultimately, it was a member of his stake who helped him network into his job. Bob found a promising job listing and sent in his résumé. Often, that’s where people stop in their job search. But after frequently going to the employment center workshops, he had learned that networking is an essential part of finding a job.
Bob asked around, and he learned he had an acquaintance in his stake who worked closely with the company that he had applied with. Although he didn’t know him very well, Bob decided to send him an email. Bob reminded him of the times that they had met, used a “Me in 30 Seconds” statement to introduce himself a little bit more, and then asked the stake member if he would be willing to give him a recommendation with the company.
The reply Bob received from the other man was warm and encouraging.
A week later, Bob received an email saying that his stake contact had been put in charge of the search committee for the position he was applying for. Because Bob had already established his interest in the position, his contact was able to recommend him to the vice president of the company and to promote him as an excellent job candidate throughout the process, until he was eventually hired.
Although Bob had sent out dozens of resumes and tirelessly networked, it was this one contact that was able to help him get an interview and then recommend him to the vice president of the company. In going through this process, Bob learned that a key contact could be anyone.