How to Generate Referrals in Your Job Hunt


As I have mentioned before, I don’t believe that job boards work for finding a job abroad (or at all).

Instead, what you SHOULD focus on is generating referrals. Building your network. Leveraging connections, starting conversations, and moving the needle by speaking to people who know YOU and want to hire YOU.

To get referrals, here’s a step-by-step process.

***Important – Before you start using these tips, please make sure that you read our article on Cold-Emailing tips. That blog post will have a variety of email templates you can use to amplify your efforts on the following sections.

1) First, update your LinkedIn profile and Resume – If someone is considering taking a meeting with you, they will 100% be looking at your Linkedin. Make sure to include your RESULTS at previous jobs. (More on the results mindset here)

2) Search yourself on Google and do anything you can to make the results look good (e.g. delete embarrassing old blog posts). I say it because I’ve seen it happen. We had one football player who was a part of a scandal that the employer found out about by googling him…and then rescinded the offer. True story. Don’t leave any incriminating evidence up.

3) If you already have a connection that you know well in the industry you want to work in, try to ask for a meeting to discuss specific opportunities in that industry. This is as close as you can get to a direct interview. If you make a good impression, employers will often give you an opportunity to prove yourself.

4) If your connection is more of an acquaintance, ask for an “informational interview” instead. If the meeting goes well you can ask for introductions to employers who are hiring. DO NOT ASK FOR A JOB if you only asked for an informational interview.

5) If you want to ask for introductions, be prepared. Have a one sentence description ready to go of the opportunities you would like to find. A good example is something along the lines of “an entry level business development or sales position at a tech startup in Cryptocurrencies”. A bad example is “a job in tech” or “a job that is a good fit for my skills.” The more specific you are, the more progress you will make.

6) If the above tips don’t work, try to make connections with your connections. Ask your friends for informational interviews, and then ask those people to see who they can introduce you to. Ideally try to find a friend who you have worked with before so that they can vouch for your skills.

7) Use linkedin to find out the connections of your connections. Lets take for example a potential job with Remote Year.. Go to LinkedIn and search “Remote Year”. It’ll show a list of all your contacts who work at Remote Year, followed by connections of connections who work at Remote Year. Pick the person (or people) with the most mutual connections and get in touch.

8) If you have 200 LinkedIn connections, and each of them has 200 connections that don’t overlap with the others, then you can reach at least 10,000 people using these methods.

9) If you still haven’t got anywhere, then spend some time networking in the industry first. Read my advice on how to network. Start with people with whom you have some connection, such as your university alumni, and friends of friends of friends (3rd order connections). Use to find relevant meetup groups.Use FB groups to find people to talk with.

10) If all of this fails, you’re probably doing something wrong in your conversations with people. Go back and analyze your past efforts and see where you may have went wrong. These techniques work, so if it’s not working, it’s probably something that you are doing in the way you pitch yourself or interact with people. Try to figure out what is holding you back.

BONUS) Find a recruiter. If nothing else works you can also reach out to some recruitment agencies who might be able to help you get your foot in the door.

Hope all of this helps and best of luck in your journey!

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