Wednesday, May 6, 2009

TAKE ACTION -Seek Help From Friends

Investors Business Daily

BYLINE: Gloria Lau

SECTION: Leaders & Success;


Say you were in the hospital recovering from minor surgery and wanted to get home. Most likely you'd call family or friends. Now suppose you lost your job. Would you call the same friends? Some folks do, but many opt for faceless sites such as or start networking with recruiters and other strangers.

"Take everything you've ever known about networking and throw it out," Bob Beaudine, an entertainment executive recruiter, told IBD. "Talking to people you don't know, handing out business cards like mints -- that doesn't work."

He urges people in need of jobs or anything else to go to their friends.

"You've developed networks of friendships over the years," Beaudine said. "You've got to go back to that. Acquaintances just wish you well. But friends will help you.

Beaudine, who recently wrote "The Power of Who," and Jerry Colangelo, chairman of the Phoenix Suns and the U.S. men's gold medal basketball team, share tips.

** Turn to the familiar. Beaudine says make a list of 12 friends, including three close buddies and one best friend.

It doesn't matter if they don't work in your industry. They care about you and might be able to introduce you to their friends in your business. Each of your 12 pals has 12 friends. Either their friends will hire you, or their friends' friends will.

Colangelo told IBD: "This applies no matter where you are on the totem poll. . . .Whatever your lot in life, there are people around you, whom you may not even recognize as important, who could be helpful, constructive. But you have to take the initial step."

** Don't be vague. "Tell your friends specifically what you want from them. If they don't know what you want, they can't help you," Beaudine said. "Don't be afraid to ask, and don't let pride hold you back."

** Use references. Endorsements help. Suppose you're applying for a job. First, ask your pals if they happen to know the hiring manager. If one does, have him say nice things about you. It'll give you an edge.

When Beaudine was picking agents for his book, he didn't know any. But he'd heard of a great agent named Jan Miller. So he e-mailed friends. Within minutes, five responded that they knew her. One volunteered to arrange a 20-minute meeting. Miller didn't know Beaudine, but she knew that their mutual friend respected him. Two hours later, she signed Beaudine.

** Look for connections. Before interviewing, find out where the hiring manager went to college, what groups he belongs to, what his interests are. Once in the office, look for ski pictures, sports team paraphernalia or photos of children. "Try to connect," Beaudine said. "People hire those they like. If you're interested in the same things, bring it up. But be authentic. All tips around manipulating your way into a job -- it's all crap."

** Give first. If you want your dreams to come true, start by helping others. "The law of reciprocity always works," Beaudine said.

A neighbor, a colleague or a friend is always watching what you're doing. So if you do good, someone will likely help you in return.

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