Hosted By

Isaiah Hankel, PhD
Isaiah Hankel, PhD
Chief Executive Officer Cheeky Scientist

Join Isaiah as he reviews the importance of networking in today’s competitive job market and checks in about pitfalls you should avoid

Here’s a quick rundown on this week’s episode:

  • First, Isaiah shares powerful statistics about the importance of networking for your PhD job search
  • Next, he breaks down 4 major mistakes he sees PhDs make as they build and nurture their professional network
  • Finally, Isaiah reminds PhDs that networking is a habit, and that habit must be in service of a larger goal — otherwise, it’s just a waste of time

From This Week’s Show…

If You’re Questioning Why You Aren’t Gaining Ground In Your Job Search, Networking Is The Answer

Applying for the right job at the right time isn’t enough in today’s job market. 

85% of jobs today are found through networking, and a whopping 70% are never made public. 

Candidates need access to this hidden job market now more than ever before. 

That’s where networking comes in. 

The question is: Are you making the most of your online reputation and leveraging your contacts? 

It’s time to check your current networking strategy against these dos and don’ts and adjust accordingly. 

check your current networking strategy against these dos and don’ts and adjust accordingly

The first thing I see PhDs doing wrong is that they try to come across as if they wear all the hats. 

Don’t do this. 

Employers aren’t looking for jacks of all trades anymore. 

What they want is an expert in their field — a professional who will add definite value to their brand and their goals. 

To establish yourself as the expert that employers are looking for, you need to redefine your personal brand. 

The framework of this personal brand consists of your value, your audience, and your priorities. 

Answer this question yourself and start sharing the results with potential employers online. 

Use your LinkedIn profile and personal website to align yourself with the qualities you are seeing in job advertisements. 

Don’t Bother To Network If You’re Not Willing To Put In The Effort

The second thing you want to avoid is clicking “Connect” on LinkedIn and just walking away. 

Nurture your network. 

Professional relationships, just like personal relationships, require work. 

Connecting is only the beginning of your journey with a network contact. 

Add value to knowing you by acknowledging your connection’s accomplishments, sharing articles with them that they might find interesting, or introducing them to your connections if you think they might benefit from knowing one another. 

Keep in touch with your contacts, as organically as possible, to keep your name top-of-mind when professional opportunities arise. 

The fourth thing I want you to avoid is networking without a clear goal. 

The connections you’re making should be added with the goal of coaxing informational interviews and referrals from them. 

After you’ve exchanged a few messages that added value to them, not you, it’s time to ask for an informational interview. 

If an informational interview goes well, it’s time to consider asking if your contact would be willing to let you use their name as a referral. 

Don’t forget, referrals are the end goal of the exchange – they’re responsible for more than 75% of the jobs landed that are made public, and the professional relationship itself is the ultimate end goal of every conversation. 

** for the full podcast, check out the audio player above.

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