Network: Even when there is no apparent reward.

I once had lunch with a senior executive who, as have so many people, found himself unemployed as the result of another company buying his company and eliminating his job.

He had been unemployed for over a year.  He told me that he had not had one interview in over a year, because there was nothing worth his time.   When I pressed him as to what he meant by things that were worth his time, he explained that he had been an executive vice president and the jobs he was seeing were two or three levels lower.

Kind of off the cuff, I suggested that he might consider just getting out and meeting people.  Take interviews when contacted about a position he had been promoted beyond, if the hiring company was interested in meeting with him. He could just suit up and get out to see if he might have some ideas for their business.

In this case, the networking paid off.  He received a call regarding a company that had managed to make its sales goals but was struggling to make money.  He suggested that perhaps he could come in as a sort of sales manager on special assignment or contract employee.  In six weeks he called me to tell me that he was the executive vice president of sales of a Midwest food company.

All he had to do was get out and meet some people when on first glance there was no apparent reward.

The World’s Most Noble Headhunter