Updated: Dec 11, 2019
We focus a lot on how to make your resumes better and how to handle job interviews. The one aspect we do not talk about as much as in the job search process is the follow-up.
Let's be clear: the follow-up will not lead you to a job. What the follow-up does is open to other opportunities you do not realize are out there. Follow-ups help build relationships
Job interviews are where you act as your best self. You dress up and you go into detail your accomplishments, your day-to-day routine, and what situations have you handle or going to be handling. There might be something you missed during the interview. You write a follow-up letter to the interviewer/screener and discuss what you mention and what you did not that paint a better picture of the work you have done.
Networking can be stressful with meeting new people and, at times, the place can be loud, you have a hard time hearing the person. Networking is one of the best ways to build relationships because you meet face-to-face and make a connection immediately. If they give you a business card, jot notes on their business card to help trigger memories from the event when you get home or go back to work the next day. In the next 24-48 hours after the event, write a letter to the person you contacted with and from the notes you wrote on the business card, transfer that into the letter that you remember the conversation and invite them to chat.
Another feature people do not realize is if you have the Linkedin app, you can go to "Find Nearby" and find people who are currently using Linkedin at this moment. You can connect with them on the spot and follow-up on where to meet up at the event. It's best to use it if you're at a conference or a networking event.
Depending on your job, networking is a necessity and, for some, that might be uncomfortable. When you go to these events, don't focus on the job; focus on what you can relate to. Focus on what alma maters they went, favorite hobbies, TV shows, and others to break the ice. It is different for job interviews since you're focusing on the job, but focus on keywords that could trigger the interviewer to have an interest like "achieve," "empower," "entrust," and others that the interviewer knows what you have accomplished and what you want to do in this position.
We neglect the follow-up because we do not know what to say except "Thank you" and "See you at future events." Always have something memorable when you meet someone and take notes on what the person has to offer. Communication is a two-way street. Use it.
Tracy Tran is the Sourcer and Social Media Specialist for The HR SOURCE.