Thursday, December 13, 2012

Using Time Wisely: Networking Over the Holidays!

Are you all done exams/assignments and have nothing to do? Of course you're enjoying your free time after a crazy final month of the semester, catching up on much needed and overdue sleep. Maybe you're seeing your friends, family, and other loved ones. Or maybe you're like me and diving into a good book that you've been meaning to read since now you've got the time! But there are lots of other productive things we could all be doing over the holiday break and one of them is networking!

You might be asking, "what does she mean? I'm going to be spending the month cuddled on my couch watching Holiday Movies for the next two weeks, with odd Holiday Parties and dinners to attend. How could I possibly network?" WELL, you don't have to change that!  I'm going to give you some suggestions for how to network while doing all of the regular things you normally do over the holidays anyway! Don't believe me? Keep reading....

1. Holiday Parties: Tell EVERYONE what you do.  You know those awkward conversations you always seem to have at holiday parties where you cannot wait to inch away AS SOON AS the conversation slows or someone breaks eye contact? Use them to your advantage! Figure out who is going to be at these parties and make sure you rub elbows with those who you think you can benefit from talking to career wise! Even people you don't know - you never know who THEY know! Talk to  these people about what you're currently doing, what you hope to do and what your plan of action is - make an impression! Who knows what opportunities they might know about or even offer to you!

2. Holiday Greeting Cards: Send a Quick Update!  Save the generic holiday greeting for passing people at the mall - in YOUR holiday greeting cards make sure to update everyone on what you've been up to and encourage people to respond with the same! By updating others and finding out what they're doing in return, you'll have an opportunity to hear about new fields of interest and also consider where you might fit into someone else's plans right now.

3. Social Media: Catch up on Facebook! Go ahead and reactivate your Facebook account now that exams are over, we all know you want to. Take the time to see what everyone has been up to in the world of Facebook and Social Media in general (Twitter, Linkedin)! Did somebody update their job title? Any statuses about new opportunities or work promotions? Now's your chance to send out your congratulations and ask your friends/acquintances about how they got where they are! You never know what kinds of tips you might recieve! Who knew lurking could be so productive afterall? ;)

And in the meantime, now is your chance to also update your career documents so they are ready for whatever opportunities might come your way. In all seriousness, there are lots of people off work right now and very few people looking for employment - take this opportunity to be on the top of everybody's list of hires when they get back to work!  My advice - be ready!

Also, feel free to come by the Career Resource Centre to talk to us further about job searching and networking over the holidays! We can review your cover letter or resume in just 15 minutes! Open 9-4pm this month, Monday to Friday until the 21st, open again on January 2nd and regular hours beginning January 7th! A good reason to get up off the couch! :P

Happy Networking and see you soon!

Brittany
Sr. Career Assistant

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