step 7: Request Guidance and Support from Connections
Karma is a beautiful thing. One of my mantras is “pay it forward” and I firmly believe that in everything you do, making sure you are helping others comes at the top of the list.
In Step 6 of this series, I recommended that you show your support of those individuals you respect and want to become acquainted with by connecting with them through social media.
The objective of this is to 1) help them to grow their audience and support their efforts in their careers and 2) gain your own credibility and trustworthiness with them.
Once you’ve followed these recommendations and done this, in other words, you’ve become a valued resource for them and others in your target industry or company, it’s time to make a more direct connection with them. Find a way to reach out to them, say through a DM (direct message) on Twitter, and let them know you think they’re great and you’re very interested in their organization. Invite them to a phone call or a cup of coffee for an informational interview.
Be honest and tell them you are working on a career change, that you think their company is a good prospect for you and that you are a great potential employee for them as well. Ask them for their industry insights and their own path in carving out their careers. Take whatever information they share with you to heart and determine how you can turn the info or their advice into your own career gold.
If they are receptive to your questions and share openly with you, you should feel good about asking them about the best way to get referred into their organization. If they feel they can be helpful, they will be more than willing to make direct introductions to hiring managers or at the very least, they will introduce you to someone else in the company that has better connections for you.
Either way, at this point in time, it’s appropriate for you to ask for help. Don’t feel like you are stepping out of line or being too forward. As long as you have done whatever you are able to do to help them and others in their efforts, you deserve some help yourself. Be confident that you have a lot to contribute and continue to help others throughout all your efforts to make your next career change.
Tell us how you are doing in your efforts and what challenges you are facing now. What steps have you taken to change careers that have been successful for you? Share your knowledge and experiences here so that others can benefit!