Getting referred for your dream job is pivotal in actually landing it. But how do we get in touch with a company VIP in the first place? The Warm Introduction.
The psychological needs of a human have changed very little in the last hundred (or thousand). You won’t find any links to peer-reviewed scientific research in this post, but it’s based in the same principles the top sales professionals in the world use. When you’re seeking an introduction to someone at a company in hopes of getting referred, you need to remember three principles:
1. Find the right person
2. Leverage a trusted source
3. Engage with relevant insights
Find the right person
To get referred for your dream job and increase your chances 20-fold, you need to find the right person at this company to refer you. This person needs to be a trusted source in the eyes of the hiring manager. Those people could include:
-The hiring manager’s peers
-The hiring manager’s superiors
-The hiring manager himself/herself
How do you identify these people? Use LinkedIn strategically.
Your first instinct might be to reach out to people in the employer’s HR department, such as a recruiter. Recruiters speak with candidates all day and, in many cases, will not receive referral bonuses for referring candidates. They can be helpful, but most are not.
Instead, seek out people who are working in or with the department(s) that might hire you. These are the people who can better understand and appreciate your talents and your relevance to the department’s needs, and a referral from them is likely to be trusted by the hiring manager.
Leverage a trusted source
When you’ve found one of the “right people” and they’re a 2nd degree connection that means you have a mutual connection. When you find a mutual connection who knows you, reach out to him/her and ask to be introduced to this “right person.”
It could take the form of: “Hi Ben, I see you’re connected to John Adams (link to their profile) on LinkedIn. I’d love to talk to Ben about XYZ because I’m looking for a (details on a new job). Do you know him well enough to introduce me to him?”
Engage with relevant insights (the XYZ)
The XYZ above prove that you know enough about the industry/company to have a worthwhile conversation with “John Adams.” You won’t be wasting his time. In fact, he would probably enjoy the conversation because he knows a lot about it- the kind of insight you can’t find on LinkedIn or Forbes. This makes John feel special and like he’s actually helping you. You’re now set up to have an informational interview that gets you referred for your dream job.
The next step is to excel in the formal interview.