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Finding your next job - The Next Step Project
3. Applying for the right role

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Making and leveraging connections

How do you meaningfully network to find your next role?

Your Next Step will likely require you to reach out to new connections through your existing networks.
If networking doesn’t come “naturally” to you, you might be thinking, “but what if they say no? How do I even ask? This feels so awkward!”

Why it matters

Establishing a strong network boosts your chances of hearing about, being referred to, or - better yet - being asked to apply to roles that dovetail well with your experience. Research has shown referrals are than other applicants - and 15x more likely relative to someone who submits a cold application.
New network connections can provide valuable insights as well and help you reframe your experiences in ways that you may not have thought of otherwise - which becomes incredibly important for shaping your subsequent interview conversations.

What to remember

Don’t ask for a job
Networking is about better understanding your industry, various companies, and connecting with people who can help you connect to the best role. You’re getting guidance, not a guarantee, and many people enjoy sharing their expertise to help someone else along.
Your ask for help is not burdensome
If it is, folks will just tell you they can’t help. You’re no worse off.
You are not entitled to someone’s time or help
Sometimes people simply aren’t in a place to help or may not be comfortable with your ask. Respect their boundaries and decision.
Be respectful and mindful of others’ time.
If they do provide it. Many of us juggle numerous responsibilities - and that’s only been further exacerbated during this pandemic.
Be genuine in your interactions.
Don’t treat someone just as a vessel for a referral or a stepping stone to your next role.

What to do

We’ve put together resources to walk you through the process end to end of how to make connections not just for this one hunt - but hopefully for a lasting part of your career.

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