Why Networking Fails Most of the Time


Many candidates wonder why they don’t get more job lead referrals and opportunities. Many assume that if they get an account on Twitter, Facebook, and Linked, attend networking meetings, and call all their friends/relatives/former co-workers – the referrals and opportunities should have the phone ringing off the hook.

Not likely!

Even if you have 2000 followers on Twitter, 500 on LinkedIn, and attend two networking meetings a month.

One of the desired outcomes from job search networking is to obtain qualified referrals and opportunities for jobs for which you might like to apply. Why then do very few of these trickle through your network?

The reason very few people are willing to refer job leads and opportunities is because they don’t yet trust you enough to make a referral.

Now you might ask, how do I gain that trust.

One of the ways to gain trust is to start giving back to your network before you start taking. This might take the form of referring job leads you hear about (that you’re not interested in) to others in your network. It might take the form of helping someone in your network develop a better 30 second elevator pitch. It might take the form of tweeting useful tips and suggestions from the job search you’re currently conducting.

The more people in your network see you as a giver, a “connector” of others, and a resource for information, the more they will begin to trust you and want to be givers to you.

This process of building trust within networking to generate referrals takes on average 3-6 months of very active and disciplined work. The result is that you can reduce your job search time dramatically.

We’ve got a very active discussion going on in our LinkedIn Discussion Group for Job Search regarding networking. Join us for that discussion by clicking here.

We also frequently discuss job search networking in our Internet Talk Radio Show on a weekly basis. Grab one of our audio downloads and start networking more effectively. You can listen and download the audio programs from our weekly show by clicking here.

Comment on this blog post about how you go “above-and-beyond-the-call-of-duty” with your network to be a giver/connector/resource. Post a comment about the plan you just put together to change the way you network to generate referrals.


graphic credit Nima

About the Author

Barry Deutsch is a founding Partner of IMPACT Hiring Solutions, co-author of "You're NOT the Person I Hired", and "This is NOT the Position I Accepted". Barry is an award-winning international speaker, retained executive recruiter, and expert on hiring and retaining top talent, and executive job search.

1 Comment

  • By Debra Feldman, JobWhiz, Executive Talent Agent, July 20, 2010 @ 5:37 am

    In simple words, it’s the quality of every social networking relationship not the number of contacts that produces results by providing leads to new opportunities. Best advice I give JobWhiz clients is to choose who needs to know them and then Network Purposefully to establish these focused connections, to promote conversations, offer help, make introductions, check in to say hello periodically – all to stay on the radar and be remembered as a giver as well as for your skills, knowledge, talents and potential value contribution.

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