The topic of returning to work affects every single mum and now it’s affecting more and more dads. When taking those steps to look for a new job, networking is very important. I am personally terrified of networking, I just find it all a little ‘oh look at me’! However, its not, and we all must value the importance of being a great networker. Your new job could just be a conversation away.
On this episode of VIP TV we’re talking to film-maker Gavin Bearfield -Boyd who lost his job and now looks after his two children whilst freelancing as a cameraman. I also speak to Majella Wilkins, Mum of two and an expert in preparing Mums in the transition from home to work life.
I asked Gavin ‘How do you juggle work and home life’ He replied ‘A very understanding wife.’ Awww that is so sweet and its great to have a strong partnership between a husband and wife. However, If you’re like me and are a single mum it’s even more difficult to juggle as we don’t have a partner to share the balance with! Ah!
If you are determined to get a job you can. I somehow manage to look after my son, freelance in the media industry and I have a part time job in the city. If I can do it, you can too! As Majella said in the video ‘you have to be very clear about what you want.‘ When job searching for part time employment I was very specific on what I wanted; a front of house job in the city of London, near a tube / train station with hours in the middle of the day so I could easily drop and pick up my son from nursery without stressing myself out!
It was hard to find but in the process of job hunting I didn’t waste time looking for something that I knew wouldn’t fit into my current lifestyle. Majella also states ‘start to build a profile of what you really enjoy, then you can start looking for jobs that suit that profile.’
I’ve always wondered if networking can actually get you a job but apparently it can! In fact a very high percentage of jobs are found through networking. Be confident and go to networking events – there are a lot of events you can go to and you never know what interesting people you may meet. Now I am not a good example, I don’t like networking, I rarely go to events / drinks and when I do go I end up finding out everything about everybody in the room but they know nothing about me! That’s possibly the presenter in me – always asking questions – but it doesn’t work to my advantage at all.
Things to remember about networking:
- Don’t be desperate
- Collaborate with people and be generous with your skills
- It’s not all about ‘take, take,take’ you have to ‘give’
- A contact you’ve made may not fruition into anything in the short term – so make sure you keep in touch with your new (and old) contacts – a new opportunity may present itself years down the line
- Don’t forget online networking. Join Linkedin and Twitter to explore ideas and new opportunities