Connecting with other people is vital if you’re looking to enter the job market or are out of a job, insecure about your job’s stability, want to make a career change or are looking for advancement.
According to the U.S. Department of Labor Statistics, 12.3 million workers were unemployed as of January 2013. Among those who are employed, many — such as the 66 percent of mothers who work full- or part-time and struggle with the conflicting needs of work and family — continually strive to find careers that are the best fit for their families and their financial needs.
Good networking skills also can make a difference in whether you get hired. One study found that people rated medical performance higher for medical residents they knew, suggesting that even the slightest of personal knowledge can give you an edge.
Other studies suggesting that even knowing a political candidate’s name can sway a voter, supporting the concept that having some connection with potential employers might give you a boost (Monitor on Psychology, July/August 2012).
So what can you do, to make that all important first connection?
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