Work is the refuge of people who have nothing better to do. : Oscar Wilde

Monday, June 14, 2010

85% of Jobs Found by Networking!

Let's think about this oft-quoted claim. Here's a parallel parable.

An old man walking his dog along a country road happens to meet a group of 20 young cyclists. During a brief conversation they say that they all plan to meet later for burgers.

About six months later the old man happens to recognise one of them. Out of curiosity he asks if the members of the group really did meet and if they all travelled by bicycle. The young person laughs and tells him yes, they did meet, and yes, most of them arrived by bicycle because they were all too young to drive cars. However, two of them had walked and one had managed to get a lift with a parent.

The old man notes that 85% of the young folks had made the journey for hamburgers by bicycle.
When employment advisors poll their former clients about how those clients found their jobs they often find that some 70 to 85% of them used some form of 'networking'. This is usually taken as evidence for the value of networking as a job finding 'technique'.

But if our clients lack other ways of travelling from joblessness to employment is it any surprise that 'networking' should be their preferred means of transportation?