If 80% of jobs go unadvertised then how are you supposed to find them?
Where ARE these “hidden” jobs everyone’s talking about?
The hidden job market isn’t some secret society only special people get invited to. In fact, it’s right there waiting for you to tap into it.
But how do you tap into something that seems so, well, elusive?
I know the idea of “networking” can be scary. I know it can feel like an obligation - something you know you SHOULD do - and you can’t think of anything you’d rather NOT do.
You’re not alone.
Most people feel the same way you do about networking.
You do it because everyone says you should.
You do it because you feel like you have to.
You psych yourself up and you go to an event, only to meet no one “interesting.” Then you walk away feeling like you’ve wasted an evening.
You’re looking for someone who can give you a job; someone who can become your client; someone who can buy your product.
You’re looking to meet someone who can offer you something.
I know because I was that person - a long time ago.
In the early days of my career, networking exhausted me. All I seemed to meet were my peers - people who were also looking for work; folks who seemed just as nervous as I was; individuals who didn’t have anything to offer me.
I’d go home exhausted with no “leads” and feeling like I had wasted my time. It would take me weeks to recover, then I would get up the nerve to go back out there only to have the same experience again and again.
THAT approach to networking IS a waste of your time. It is unproductive. No wonder we feel exhausted by the idea of “networking.” THAT kind of networking IS exhausting!
That kind of networking comes from a place of desperation and need. It comes from a position of want and scarcity.
Tip - Shift your mindset for better networking.
You MUST shift your mindset to have a better networking experience. You HAVE to reframe your way of thinking about networking in order for it to be a rewarding experience.
Your mindset - your perspective - should not be, “What does this person have to offer me?”
Instead ask yourself, “What do I have to offer this person?”
Ask yourself that one, very simple question every time you meet someone new, and your experience of networking will shift - your outcomes will be more rewarding and the connections you make will be stronger.
And YOU DO have something to offer everyone you meet.
You have a unique life experience that has given you a well to draw from. In that well is a lifetime of knowledge, education, friends, family and stories that can serve others.
You can offer a thought, a suggestion, an idea or a connection.
You can connect your new acquaintance to a resource that might help them.
You can tell a story that might make them feel less alone, confused or at a loss.
You can introduce them to someone you know who might be able to help them in some way.
This is called generosity.
Shift your perspective from a mentality of taking to a mindset of giving.
Apply the spirit of generosity to your networking and your experience will transform.
Change your approach from networking to get something to networking to give something, and you will make genuine connections that will shift your opinion of networking altogether.
THIS is how you tap the hidden job market - you build genuine connections by being a generous person.
Plant the seeds of generosity without asking for anything in return, and watch what happens.
Over time, you will see that others will become more generous in helping YOU make connections - helping YOU make things happen - whether that’s finding a job, finding a client or building a partnership.
If you do this often and do this well, I promise good things will happen.
Leave a comment below and let me know how it goes!