University Career Centers and Employment Groups can engage job candidates through the PeopleHirePeople® job networking process with the activities below.
• Activities are carefully detailed with references to Network for a Job. • Instructors can present activities after studying the complete book. • Materials and supplies are minimal to present activities.
Note: Instructors for these activities could be an intern, graduate student, staff or a group member.
Activity #1: Analyze Your Network
Objective: Job candidates become aware where to strengthen their networks. (Present Activity #1 before any assigned reading of Network for a Job)
Whiteboard: Place the word “network” on a white board. Have job candidates do the same on a piece of paper throughout this activity.
Then dissect “network” into two words: NET WORK
Whiteboard: Draw a large circle under the word “NET”. Then cut the circle into three equal pie pieces.
Label each piece of the pie with the labels below: Pie Piece #1: Family & Friends Pie Piece #2: Hobbies & Sports Pie Piece #3: Career & Jobs
Whiteboard: Next take the word “WORK” and make three columns under it with the same pie pieces labels. Add line numbers to each column.
Family & Friends
Hobbies & Sports
Career & Jobs
Questions for instructor to ask:
• How do you work at interacting with your family & friends network? (Potential answers: parties, phone calls, texts, meals, emails) • How do you work at interacting with your hobbies & sports network? (Potential answers: attend sporting events, engage on teams, blog, text, phone calls) • What do you do to build your career & job network? (Potential answers: emails, LinkedIn, meetings, associations, business lunches)
Have job candidates go to the “NET” circle pie and put the percentage of time spent with each of their three networks: family & friends, hobbies & sports and career & employment. (The least percentage of time for most will be the career & employment network.)
Discussions: Lead a discussion the work involved to interact with all types of people. Start with how easy it is to network with family & friends and hobbies & sports. Move the discussion to the career & employment network requiring more work and effort. Start a brainstorming session: What needs to be done to grow your career & employment network? Lead the discussion: how to find and contact professionals they need to know for employment. Discuss “common connectors” for a career & employment network.
Activity #2: Informal Survey
Objective: Job candidates discover most jobs are found through networking and referrals. (Present Activity #2 before any assigned reading of Network for a Job)
Assignment: Have job candidates interview five experienced professionals who have been in the workforce for a minimum of five years in any profession. Instructors have permission to copy only the PeopleScript below and pass out to job candidates or the script can be written on a whiteboard for job candidates to copy. The script provides guidance for the survey.
“I am a student at ABC University and have been assigned to an informal survey task which requires responses to a couple of questions. Would you have just a minute?” OR “I belong to an employment group and we have been assigned to discover how most professionals found their employment. Would you have time to answer three short questions?
Questions: “How did you get your current position?” “Was it through referral or through a formal application?” “If you have had a previous position, how did you get that position, referral or formal application?” “Have you hired in your positions and if so, were most of your hires from resumes through formal applications or referrals?”
Closing: “I appreciate your time and your answers will allow me to participate in the group discussion on how most professionals find employment and hire.”
Discussion: Ask job candidates for their results and show the tallies on a whiteboard. Lead a discussion as to the results the job candidates found. The majority of the professionals they interviewed will have found their positions through personal connections not formal applications and the same for hiring.
Ask the job candidates to share individual stories of how some of the professionals they interviewed actually got their jobs.
Discuss how job candidates can use the information they gained from the survey to change their personal job hunts.
Activity #3: Network Stats Comparison
Objective: Reality check for job candidates with their personal job hunts.
Whiteboard: Write the words below in a column. Have job candidates write these same words in a column on a piece of paper.
Online Jobs Recruiters Small Businesses Networking Conversations Unadvertised Jobs Hiring Managers
Have each candidate write their answers as instructors ask the following questions.
#1 “What percentage of your job hunt is searching for advertised/posted jobs and making applications online?” Job candidates write down: Online Jobs ___% (job candidates write their percentage of making online applications) #2 “How many recruiters have you contacted and how many of them have assisted you in finding employment?” Job candidates write down word “Recruiters” ____ (job candidates write the number of recruiters that have assisted them) #3 “What percentage of applications have you made to small businesses, those businesses that employ less than five hundred?” Job candidates write down the words “Small Business” ____% (job candidates write their percentage of applying to small businesses) #4 “What percentage of time do you spend on job hunt networking such as one-on-one conversations, phone calls, events etc. where you are actually speaking with professionals using your human voice? Job candidates write down the word “Networking” ____% (job candidates write their percentage of time spend in networking) #5 “How many unadvertised jobs have you been able to discover?” Job candidates write down the words “Unadvertised Jobs” ____ (job candidates write their number for unadvertised jobs) #6 “How many hiring managers have you been able to contact directly? Job candidates write down the word “Hiring Managers” ____ (job candidates write their number for hiring managers they have contacted directly)
Reading Assignment: Upon completion of the questions, assign job candidates to read the Introduction Letter and the “Hunt by the Numbers” article in Network for a Job.
Discussion: Lead a discussion about the statistics in the introduction. Job candidates should be able to see how they are conducting their current job hunt as compared to what the actual statistics are. Discuss where they need to focus in their job hunt versus their current focus. Review the findings of Activity #2, the survey previously done by the job candidates. Compare how their surveys relate to the statistics in the introduction of Network for a Job.
Whiteboard: Introduce what job candidates will do to build a job specific network. Write the following on white board:
The PeopleHirePeople®’s three-step process:
• Who to Contact: Identify professionals with vast networks. • How to Hunt: Investigate how to find these professionals. • What to Ask: Initiate questions for job information and referrals.
Activity #4: Sales Professionals Connectivity
Objective: How job candidates can grow their job hunts.
Reading Assignment: Chapter #1 Sales Professionals in Network for a Job to read before beginning Activity #4.
Discussion: Lead a discussion as why seeking out sales professionals would be great contacts to grow your job network. Discussion to include “common connectors” and “private first-hand information.”
Assignment: Create small groups of three job candidates with all three job candidates hunting in the same industry or searching for similar positions. Have job candidates compile a list of products and services that they would use in their positions or professionals they would manage or hire who would use these products or services. Experienced professionals might have business cards of sales professionals who called on them in their past positions.
Assignment: Research sales professionals on compiled list. Find the companies that sell the products and services. Or discover the value added reseller of the products and services. Call the company to find the sales professionals in the desired geographic regions. Note each sales professional’s contact information. This will be used in assignment #5.
Activity #5: Converse with Sales Professionals
Objective: Job candidates converse with individual sales professionals to obtain private first-hand information and referrals.
Assignment: Job candidates prepare a list of questions to ask sales professionals on their compiled list from Activity #4. Reference Section C: What to Ask in Network for a Job to assist with their preparation of questions.
Assignment: Job candidates call sales professionals using their prepared questions. During conversations job candidates need to take careful notes.
Discussion: Job candidates share the results of the conversations with sales professionals. Points for discussion:
• Ease of connection and conversation. • Information and referrals gained. • How to use information in their job hunts.
Activity #6: Volunteerism
Objective: Job candidates’ best volunteer efforts can also benefit their job network.
Reading Assignment: Instructors have permission to distribute copies of the article, Volunteer & Job Network Simultaneouslyand lead a discussion using the examples in the article.
Volunteer & Job Network Simultaneously
“How can I make a difference while continuing to search for work? I am looking for some advice on finding and balancing a volunteer role with my job search”, wrote Donald to a LinkedIn professional network group. The group offered volunteer ideas as local charities, unemployment state offices, church jobs ministry and libraries none pertained directly to his industry.
PeopleHirePeople® took the challenge, not knowing Donald or his industry. According to his LinkedIn profile Donald is seeking a director position in customer service or technical support. He resides in the Dallas/Fort Worth area.
PeopleHirePeople® suggests Donald volunteer in a capacity facilitating industry people connections. The benefits of this approach are to gather the most current industry information and to discover unpublished jobs to share with unemployed industry colleagues. At the same time Donald will grow his job network and learn firsthand about jobs of interest to him personally.
To accomplish volunteerism that can assist in his job search, PeopleHirePeople® selected a professional association to best accomplish this goal. To find this professional association, key words in a search engineer were: customer service national association.
Selecting the International Customer Service Association, PeopleHirePeople® studied their website. Here are a few volunteer options Donald can propose to the association:
Volunteer Position #1: The website revealed that there were several regional chapters but none covering the state of Texas. Volunteer to set up a new regional chapter of Texas and the surrounding states. First contact all presidents of other regional chapters and learn how to promote the new chapter. This is twofold. First it allows Donald to get information in order to perform the volunteer tasks. Second Donald will introduce himself to employed industry professionals making sure they know he is looking for a new opportunity within the customer service industry. He builds his personal job network and volunteers at the same time. Also, he gets firsthand industry news.
Volunteer Position#2: Volunteer to recruit potential new members for the association. First on his target list for members could be those companies Donald where would like to seek employment. This allows Donald to call in an official capacity in order to get through to decision makers in each company.
Volunteer Position #3: Volunteer to personally contact members for membership renewals. This gives Donald access to the current membership list. Again he calls in an official capacity and learns firsthand news and information about the industry.
Volunteer Position #4: Volunteer to write for the association’s newsletter. Author articles where industry experts are interviewed. This gives Donald access to the experts and calling in the official capacity as a reporter. The website has a web page set aside indicating, “Coming soon - Your link to the brand new ICSAToday Newsletter.”
Volunteer Position #5:PeopleHirePeople® noticed this association does not have a career page on its’ website. Donald can volunteer to set up a career page so that members can post open positions in their respective companies. This gives Donald a reason to visit members on the new offering by the association. Establishing member contact can be done through the newsletter or association events. However best connections for Donald is to personally phone members and converse one-on-one. Thus he can obtain advice for his personal job search. The greatest advantage is that Donald learns about jobs that most likely have not been advertised.
Volunteer Position #6: Volunteer to be a committee chairperson for programs or events. This affords Donald to interact with industry professionals to recruit guest speakers, obtain industry trainers, and promote event attendance.
The above volunteer actions allow Donald to keep other unemployed colleagues apprised of current industry information and uncover jobs that would not be otherwise published. Donald can demonstrate his diligence, contributive abilities, work ethics and personality to members who might become potential employers. Showing is always better than telling.
Job candidates should consider the same volunteer efforts in their respective industries on a local, national or international level.
More Activities: Checkout the Activities for New Graduates & Parents on the next webpage. These can be modified for University Career Center and Employment Group job candidates.