5 More Tips for Networking During The Holidays
Put more jingle in your mingle!
Today we pick up with the second part of a two-part episode covering my top ten tips for beefing up your networking during the holiday season.
5 More Tips for Holiday Networking
Whether you’re currently employed or not, you shouldn’t miss unique opportunities for networking during the holidays. Today, learn five more tips to put the jingle in your mingle. If you haven’t listened to part one, go ahead, we’ll wait. Ready for Tip #6?
Tip #6: Send Out a Year-End Daily Count Down to Increase Your Exposure
Think about doing a year-end count-down by sending out a short daily tip from the beginning of December until New Year’s Eve. For example: 30 Days to a Stronger, Richer Blog; 30 Daily Tips To Powerboost Your Networking; 30 Ways To Improve Your Public Speaking. That gives you an excuse to increase the number of interactions with your network; and as long as the content is good, you will be providing true value to your audience. If you’re thinking, “Great advice—if only this podcast had come out at the beginning of December instead of the end,” don’t worry. Make your year-end countdown a beginning year “fast start” with a daily tip for each day in January.
Remember to provide information, not a sales pitch. I think it’s best to very subtly suggest your call to action in your signature line only. For example, if you are job searching, sign every daily tip with “ABC Professional currently exploring opportunities for new employment”, or “XYZ Professional looking for final stop on career path.” If you are selling services, “Your Communication Professional offering workshops, keynotes, and seminars.” Then include a link to more information.
Tip #7 Send Holiday Presents (Free Stuff)
Most people like free stuff, especially if it’s good stuff. Consider creating a digital download page “holiday present.” You can include an electronic report or multiple helpful reports or presentations (you don’t even need to create them yourself, just choose content that you have found helpful). Then mail physical and electronic postcards with a link to your digital present. On that page of course, you’ll also want to include a summary of your experience and a link to your resume or LinkedIn summary.
Another similar idea is to give away books. Buy several copies directly from your favorite author and give them away to your colleagues and friends. (And hey, have I mentioned I have a book out? <wink>) Maybe even ask the author if he or she will sign the books. Recently I read that a well-known blogger gave away copies of books he had on his book shelf--duplicates he had been given. I’m thinking of doing that this year, since I have a few duplicates right now.
Tip #8: Volunteer or Take a Seasonal Position
Many organizations are stressed at holiday time and could use an extra set of hands. Why not consider doing something you’ve never done before. It’s a way to broaden your experience, meet new people, and give during the holidays.
Plus, if you’re temporarily unemployed, the sheer act of working will give you a confidence boost. And with the right attitude and dedication, you never know where it might lead. (If you do decide to give back this year, don’t forget to create a separate “seasonal” resume. Your seasonal or volunteer resume should be different from your regular resume.)
Tip #9: Perform Your Annual Web Career Review
I think the holidays are good time to remind yourself to review how others will find you when they do a web search. Have you Googled yourself recently? Are you participating in the current trifecta of social media (Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter)? Do your online profiles need a make-over? Is your information up-to-date? Do your profiles represent your brand in the best possible way? Have you created and updated your PAAQ and your CAGE this quarter?
[[AdMiddle]What are they, you ask? In my book, Ace Your Interview I recommend that all career professionals create (or update) their CAGE document. It’s a highly detailed repository of your career accomplishment, goals and experiences —different from your resume. It acts as your career memory and helps you uniquely prepare for each of your interviews. A PAAQ (Professionally Asked and Answered Questions) is a document created that gets sent along with your resume. You can see examples of PAAQs and other career tools at: http://www.interviewextras.com/.
The bottom line is that we all change over the course of a year and it’s a good idea to use some of your holiday down time to review and be certain you are representing yourself to the best of your abilities.
Tip #10 Have Fun!
Finally, have some fun and enjoy your family during the holidays. Remember to recharge your own batteries and renew your spirit and enthusiasm by taking some time for yourself. Go to that dance class you’ve been meaning to go to, go to the Rockapella holiday concert to put yourself in a good mood, listen to holiday music during your meals at home, or make your home festive and special. Enjoy a walk downtown with to see the lights and stop for some hot chocolate when you get a bit chilly. The more you can relax and enjoy the holidays, the more you’ll be able to genuinely give of yourself. (And yes, I did do all those things this year in the past few weeks.)
This holiday season give yourself a give and make the most of your networking efforts.
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