Job Search Etiquette: Don’t Make This Networking Mistake!

Classy Career Girl readers beware! Don’t make this networking mistake that I witnessed this week!

The Background:
A career counselor at my school referred an MBA student to talk to me to discuss my current job as a consultant and how he could get a job at my company. I was happy to talk to him more about it and told him when I was available to do an informational interview.

[Related Post: The 5 Steps to Networking Effectively in Your Job Hunt]

Then I received this response a week later:
“I apologize for the delayed response.  I’ve been hoping to get an offer elsewhere for the last two days, so I was waiting for that call before asking for more information on your company.  If it falls through, I would love to discuss positions at your company over the phone as you suggested.  I will be in touch once I finally receive a response.”

Here is what I gather from this response, and why it was a networking mistake:

  1. Working at my company is not his first choice, therefore I will not be offering or referring him for a job.
  2. He doesn’t realize that networking is about how you can help others, not what others can do for you.
  3. He also is not aware that you don’t network only when you are searching for a job, you should always be looking to expand your network whether you have a job or not.  You never know what the future may hold and what connections other people may have for you.
You will never guess the email I received from him a couple days later!
“The job opportunity I had pending has fallen through after all. So, I would love to discuss details about positions at your company as you originally suggested.”
Imagine that!

Readers, what networking mistakes have you witnessed in your jobs?

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