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Networking - Does it still work?

"Networking" was the biggest buzz word of the 90's. To get a job or grow a business - all you had to do was network. Bill Gates' initial deal with IBM, in which they bought and added the MS DOS operating system to all their PC's, was a result of networking . Bill's mother worked on a Board of Directors with IBM's president, and that contact started Microsoft's incredible rise to the top. Likewise, savvy job hunters knew that developing contacts lead to discovering many great jobs that were never advertised. And with 85% of all jobs not appearing in the want ads, networking was a great job hunting tool. But does it still work today? Before I answer that question, let's look at what has happened.

Many job hunters, frantic to find a job, raced from contact to contact, monopolizing people's time, becoming bothersome and pushy. It got to the point that many managers and executives refused to attend association functions because of all the job hunters there waiting to pounce on them. Networking never yielded instant success - thus job hunters and business owners alike become frustrated with poor leads and the lengthy time frame it took to see results.

Today, networking is still an important career management tool. But it must be cultivated over a lifetime. Memberships in clubs, groups and associations can not start the day you need a job. By actively participating in professional and community organizations you become known to others, and these contacts will lead you to various opportunities that may eventually enhance and expand your career. Use these effective guidelines to network and still obtain positive results:

- Robin Ryan

Copyright 2005 Robin Ryan. All rights reserved.

America's most popular career counselor, Robin Ryan, is the author of four bestselling books: 60 Seconds & You're Hired!, Winning Resum Winning Cover Letters, and What to Do with the Rest of Your Life. She's appeared on over a thousand TV & radio shows including Oprah, Dr. Phil, and has been published in most major newspapers and magazines including USA Today & the Wall Street journal. Contact her at 425.226.0414; email: info@robinryan.com.

www.robinryan.com