Roll out the Rolodex

Spud was distraught. He’d been looking for a job for months with no luck. He’d had a few interviews in the early stages of his search, but these days it felt like he was shouting into a void that wasn’t listening.

But don’t feel too bad for Spud yet because he was luckier than most. You see Spud came from a big and well connected family that knew most of the big-wigs in their town. Spud had even put in a few years at the thriving family frozen hashbrown business, but knew it wasn’t for him.

Now, to his credit, Spud wanted to find this new path on his own, to get out from under the family umbrella and prove he had what it takes independently. He’d been handed hashbrowns all his life, and he didn’t want to be handed a job. And while we admire Spud’s egalitarian attitude, he was also on a road to nowhere with a stack of untapped resources on hand. C’mon Spud!

What Spud didn’t realize was that there was a middle ground in all of this. Tapping into the network his family had cultivated didn’t mean he was asking for a freebie, it was a means of getting a foot in the door. He would still need to hone his pitch, clarify his goals, be diligent with company research, and nail an interview – no easy feat. But as long as he wasn’t offering free frozen hashbrowns in exchange for a job, capitalizing on a connection could get him an introduction, or even give him new insights into the company or industry.

What Spud needed to learn was that no one gets a job alone. So whether the rolodex is expansive or just in the seedling stages, use it. People usually want to help you – let them.

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