If you’re looking to reach out to new contacts in order to get information about possible career paths or opportunities, alumni have been shown to be some of the most willing people to respond. Here are a few tips about how to connect with alumni.
1. One of the best ways to find alumni is by using LinkedIn’s Find Alumni tool. Hover your mouse above the Connections tab and click the Find Alumni option. From there, you can use a number of filters to look at the profiles of various alumni that meet your search criteria.
2. Once you’ve found someone you’d like to get in touch with, see if you have any shared connections that can provide you with an introduction.
3. If you’re reaching out to someone that you’ve never met, it’s best to start by asking for information, rather than opportunities. What questions do you have about your field, a specific company, resources for finding employment? Rather than asking for a job, ask your new connection for information that can help you be more effective in your job search.
4. When an alum or new contact provides you with information, time, advice, etc., be sure to always follow up with a quick but thoughtful email. Not only is this a nice thing to do, but it will also go a long way toward building a professional relationship.
Find out more about how to use LinkedIn for career exploration and job searching by listening to the recording of our When, Why & How to Use LinkedIn webinar, found under the Event and Webinar Recordings section of the Career Resources web page.