I want to discuss the benefit of the Job Club itself. Job Clubs bring unemployed people together for the common purpose of networking to find a new job. It is a support group, in essence.
The Oi Partners Job Club that I presented to happens to be an employer paid service. Oi is Outplacement International (www.oipartners.net). However, a lot of job clubs are free and hosted by churches or have local community support, as well. In my town I’m familiar with 2 church groups, 1 social group and 1 business exchange group. In each of these, the common theme is networking; people meeting new people to find leads to a potential new job. It is easy to feel comfortable around people that are all after the same thing.
Part of the fear of networking is being ashamed about your job loss. You can feel, at times, that you are wearing a sign that everyone else can see that says, “I’m unemployed!” But they cannot, and you should not be ashamed. Many talented people, just like you and me, lost our jobs because our companies had to make some financial decisions to cut expenses by reducing their workforce. In fact, HR has a term for it called RIF, which is Reduction In Force.
Networking in a Job Club can empower you and give you back your self confidence. You meet lots of great people and wonder why they don’t have a job because they seem very talented and have deep knowledge about their line of work. Your goal is to meet new people that might know someone that will lead to a job in your field. It’s not that they don’t know about any jobs. It’s just that they haven’t found a match for themselves. They are hoping that you’ll know someone in their field that they should meet. Aim to help others as much as they help you. You’ll have a much more successful networking relationship if you do.
Let me hear from you! I’d love you hear about how Job Clubs and networking events have helped you find a new opportunity. Your stories will encourage our readers to get out there and network for themselves.
The Laid Off IT Guy!
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