TUESDAY TIPS: Education, Training, Networking, and More
During the month of August, Resume was the theme of our Tuesday Tips. This month the theme will be Networking. To kick us off, I want to mention a "2-fer" (two results gained from one action taken). This "2-fer" comes when you take a skills building workshop or certificate program or undertake additional education. First of all, by doing this, you are almost always adding value to your resume content and you may increase your viability as a candidate for a new role, advancement, or job. Secondly, you have the opportunity to expand your network at the same time. Read on to hear how this happens.
When you are in a class, you have the opportunity to meet new people. Hence, you increase your network. Remembering to exchange cards when getting to know others is important. Set a goal to add at least 2 class participants to your contact list and keep in touch with them. Some of you reading this may want to get to know everyone in the class. I set our bar at the lower end - getting to know 2 people - because networking doesn't come easily to a lot of us. I have found that I have more success in meeting others at events when I don't overwhelm myself by thinking that I have to connect with everyone in the room. When a goal is set lower and viewed as achievable, there is still the option to set a higher goal next time or exceed the goal the first time.
So, now you know about this "2-fer". However, before you sign up for additional education and training, there is one very important item to address. If you are taking workshops and classes in order to achieve a target job, ask yourself if you would be able to attain this target today, without additional training or education. Sometimes the additional coursework will not be the way to reach the target. It might be your way of procrastinating. Or, there might be new job related skills that you would be able to attain through a project or assignment at work. Or, perhaps you volunteer and gain new skills through that experience. A client of mine attained recent HR experience through a volunteer opportunity. We have added it to her resume. It's right up front along with her work experience in other areas. Or, sometimes, what you really need is more visibility for the work that you are already doing and you aren't quite certain how to go about gaining that visibility and recognition. This is a time to reach out to mentors and those in your work network for advice about how you might gain "good" attention for your work.
In conclusion, please make certain that you are addressing the entire landscape surrounding your job target. Seek guidance from experts in that field to find out what next steps will be the best ones to take. I always recommend to my clients that they go through an information gathering process before signing up for coursework. This brings additional assurance to them that they are taking the right next step in reaching their next career journey destination.
In wrapping up Tuesday Tips today, here's a tip that will assist you in your emails and email responses. Always put your contact information at the end of your email. As a former recruiter and hiring manager, and now as a career coach who receives hundreds of emails each week, it's so helpful when I don't have to go back to a former email or attachment or saved file to find a phone number. It makes my job easier and gives you more insurance that the call will come to you from the receiver of your email message.
I hope you found this information helpful and that you have a great week ahead.