How Networking Really Pays You – Andrew Chenery

In today’s economy, most people would consider themselves lucky to have a job at all, right? How about you… even if it’s in a position you never expected, it pays the bills. You’re one of the fortunate ones, who has no need to struggle to even need or get an interview.

It might be you are one of those brilliant people who adopted the “employeepreneur” mindset and already has made great progress in your career. But, too often, one major factor gets overlooked by people who either have or need a job and it’s one they truly NEED.

You have to understand, the marketplace continues to evolve. While some tactics and skills are timeless and thus, the same today as they were 20 years ago, the media and methods may have changed vastly. One classic example is “social media.” Too often, seasoned professionals might view social media as a waste. Guess what? They’re ignoring thousands of pounds in potential income!

It isn’t just about using Facebook to market to your friends and sell them products. Although, yes, there is a way to do that without coming off as a slimy, obnoxious person who is quickly “unfriended.”

But here’s the mistake I see people make, and I’m sure you might have fallen into this trap at some point. You have a job, and even though it isn’t your dream job, you are thankful. But because you are working — you are not really motivated to keep your resume or portfolio up-to-date. You are not motivated to take extra classes to increase your skill sets. And the worst of all, you are not motivated to KEEP networking!

Anything can happen at anytime, and I know you know that! Your company could go belly up, relocate or experience major layoffs. Some emergency may even come up in your life requiring you to leave your position.

But if you aren’t continually networking, you are doing yourself a disservice. If you don’t network, chances are people won’t randomly offer you your dream job or a higher-paying position. If you lost your job tomorrow, your network would likely be nonexistent, right?

This doesn’t mean you have to sign up for a Facebook account. But you do need to get yourself out there! Community networking events, LinkedIn, Twitter, Google Plus, Reddit…wherever, whenever. There are people all around you looking to talk about their passions, connect, exchange business cards and if you make a big impression — who do you think will be the first to come to mind when they need to hire someone for a job?

It isn’t about technology, it’s about creating relationships. And the majority of today’s networks are online. You might have neglected (or ignored) your network, but it isn’t too late to get caught up!

You should also be grooming your online reputation. When you put your name in a search engine, what comes up? Nothing? Or a profile page full of unprofessional photos? Imagine the message you’re sending to the world — literally. But, the wonderful thing about networking: it offers a chance to market and brand YOURSELF. And with online profiles you create, you have total control over that image.

Trust me, a lot of employers do search engine checks on prospective applicants, along with the standard background check. If you are looking for work or seek higher employment altogether, this is something you can’t ignore!

Take control of your online imprint today, and leave me your comments on today’s message. If you are one of those building your social media network, share or like today’s post on Facebook or Twitter and get in on our community. We’re talking and networking every day.