We are recruiters specializing in fashion, textiles and sporting goods. We work across Canada with both large and small companies. Most of our clients are repeat customers and we obtain new clients mostly by referalls.
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Alex Freund is an American Career Coach. He recently wrote about the all important elevator pitch in a blog post. It’s a worthwhile read and I’ve pasted it below for your convenience:
“A recent article of mine covered most people’s lack of efficacy in practicing their elevator pitches at job search networking meetings. I wanted to follow up on that and prove my tenets, so I brainstormed with a group of trusted associates—all of whom are in transition—and we came up with some “best practices.” Following are our findings. Based on this information, you’ll be able to rework your own pitch and then practice it when networking. I promise you’ll see results instantly.
It’s most important to realize that different circumstances require different pitches. Otherwise, your elevator pitch will be perceived as canned and out of context. Make sure it’s memorable, because if it isn’t, you’ll simply sound like everyone else. Try introducing an element of surprise or some humor. The pitch has to be brief and to the point, so that people don’t tune you out. And it has to have a positive tone. No one’s interested in why you’re in transition.
Announce your name at the beginning and again at the end. Make sure people hear you and get the name. If you say it fast the way we normally do, people won’t get it or be able to remember it. Following your name, identify your position—or the position you want to get. Create a point of reference for your role—for example, chief financial officer in a small company.
Tone of Voice
Here’s where you have to sound enthusiastic. Here the word sound has the literal meaning. A voice too loud or too soft won’t work. Also, some people speak faster than normal when under pressure. A normal speed is best. And voice modulation where appropriate increases likability and interest in you.
Facial Expression and Body Language
People judge others based on what they see, and most people have their own personal biases. However, it’s universally agreed that professional attire and an overall professional look are most helpful for promoting your own interest when networking. A genuine and broad smile means the same anywhere and in any language. Above all, make good eye contact with the audience, but don’t move your head like a panning security camera, either. Project positive body language by standing erect. Don’t shift your weight from leg to leg.
Creating an effective 30-second elevator pitch is not as easy as it seems to be. In those 30 seconds, you need to introduce lots of content and then act it out—a feat that for some is very difficult. But with some improvement and then several live repetitions, anyone can do it. Good luck. You’ll feel tremendously successful once people tell you how well you’ve done.”
- Alex Freund
We all know networking is important (or at least we keep hearing that it is), but what is networking and what can it really do for us? Here at Colintex Placements we are often asked about networking: how to do it, is it useful, how to make it less stressful, etc.
Well, we have some great news: networking does not have to be this big, daunting task you’ve imagined. We even believe that after some practice anyone can be a networking pro. Below, we’ve combined some basic networking pointers to get you started.
In one simple line networking is: the meeting and sharing of information with people in order to establish a mutually beneficial relationship.
The more information you are aware of in your chosen career field the better you will be prepared for success.
Who to Network With
Careful not to confuse networking with going out with a group of your close friends or chatting over Facebook. This isn’t the type of networking we’re talking about. Face-to-face networking with people that are in the same (or a related) industry as you is often the most effective way to help you with your career. However, be open to talking with everybody, you never know who’s hand you shake today will be opening a door for you tomorrow. In other words, keep an open mind.
Where to Network
People often believe they have to be at a networking event in order to make business connections. This is just not the case. Networking can occur anywhere. Anyone you meet has the potential to be a valuable member of your network. Keep this in mind during your day-to-day interactions with people.
How to Network
- Have your “elevator pitch” ready to go. This is simply a quick summary about yourself. Keep it business related, talk about what school you graduated from, what you’re passionate about, your current employment, what you love most about your industry. Whatever you decide to “pitch” about yourself remember to keep it honest, interesting, and under 1 minute long. After you test a few elevator pitches out you will find one that suits you best.
- Be positive, honest and true to yourself.
- Confidence: fake it ‘til you make it. No, this isn’t about being dishonest, this is about putting your best foot forward. Many people struggle with confidence especially when talking with strangers. However, it’s important to focus on giving people a clear picture of who you actually are, and who you are most of the time is not a mumbling, shaking, nervous mess. So fake confidence until you become more comfortable with this whole networking thing. It’s OK to shake on the inside, just don’t let anyone else see it.
- Give out your contact information. You should always have business cards on you ready to hand out. Even if you’re unemployed you should make personal business cards with your name, program you graduated from, your personal email address, and phone number. Make sure to collect others’ cards as well. Send a follow-up email to the people you met thanking them for their time. This will help you stand out in the sea of people they may have also met.
- Industries are constantly changing. No matter how long you’ve been in the workforce it’s always crucial to meet new people and keep informed about your industry. Gaining knowledge is always powerful.
- It allows for self-promotion. It’s a great way to either get yourself known in the industry, or remind people of who you are and what amazing things you’re up to.
- It just might land you that job you’ve been searching for. Often it is who you know, not what you know, that lands you a job.
- You might be able to help others. Just as you’d like to gain connections and information by meeting people there is a very real chance that you will be in a position to help others when you engage in networking.
Check us out at www.colintex.com
Article from www.fashioncareercenter.com In a recent study by Harvard University, it was established that well over 50% of positions are secured through networking. Ever talk to your former bosses from years ago, former co-workers, neighbors, your accountant or banker? Individuals like these are your prime source for finding employment. The list is endless. In today’s competitive and sophisticated fashion industry, you must be aggressive, innovative, visible and relentless. Yes, jobs are plentiful today, but are you seeking just a job, or a career? There is no mystique. It’s just plain hard work and perseverance. Everyone you talk to, everyone you meet… they are your targets. It’s incredible what people know about job opportunities that you would never have imagined. Your hairdresser/barber talks to everyone from company clerks to presidents. You are not your accountant’s or attorney’s only client. Let people know. Give them a chance to help. You will be absolutely amazed at the results.
Article from www.fashioncareercenter.com
In a recent study by Harvard University, it was established that well over 50% of positions are secured through networking. Ever talk to your former bosses from years ago, former co-workers, neighbors, your accountant or banker? Individuals like these are your prime source for finding employment. The list is endless. In today’s competitive and sophisticated fashion industry, you must be aggressive, innovative, visible and relentless. Yes, jobs are plentiful today, but are you seeking just a job, or a career?
There is no mystique. It’s just plain hard work and perseverance. Everyone you talk to, everyone you meet… they are your targets. It’s incredible what people know about job opportunities that you would never have imagined. Your hairdresser/barber talks to everyone from company clerks to presidents. You are not your accountant’s or attorney’s only client. Let people know. Give them a chance to help. You will be absolutely amazed at the results.