Monday, 27 May 2013

Job Search Lesson 6 – keep track of your networking activities

Tracking networking activitiesAs you conduct informational interviews and network to uncover unadvertised roles, I recommend that you develop a system for keeping track of your networking activities.

I approached this by taking notes just after I’d completed an informational interview while the material was still fresh in my mind. I then populated a table much like the one below. 

That way I always knew when I’d met with someone, what I’d taken away from the meeting, who had introduced me to them and whether I had done the appropriate post-informational interview follow-up.



1st-Level  Connection
2nd-Level  Connection
3rd-Level Connection
Status
Chris Smith, friend
James Bruckner, Marketing Manager, HSBC
-
Met James May 10. Sent thank-you email and LinkedIn invite May 11. Sent “thank-you for intro” email to Chris May 11.
Chris Smith, friend
James Bruckner, Marketing Manager, HSBC
Peter Thompson, Marketing Manager, Nike
Met Peter May 18. Sent thank-you email and LinkedIn invite May 19. Sent “thank-you for intro” email to James May 20.

By way of explanation, 1st-level connections are people that you know right now. 2nd-level connections are people that your 1st-level connections know…and so on.


I also recommend saving your contacts’ business card information in a digital form somewhere (I use Microsoft Outlook). 

Make sure to capture some key notes about the contact; for example, where you met and why that person is important. That way you can easily search for them in future (e.g. you could search for “Starbucks” to figure out the name of the guy you met there).

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