In today’s corporate hiring playing field, the competition is fierce both as a hiring company and as a job seeker. Everyone knows that referrals are the best way to get introduced to the right person. But what happens when your referral tree stops producing fruit? Maybe it is time that you should re-evaluate your technique.
Here are some questions to consider:
- Am I being intentional about finding new referrals?
- When is the best time to ask for a referral?
- What value can I provide for a person that helps me?
- How do I determine if my contacts open or guarded?
- What questions should I ask to generate referrals?
- How should I phrase the questions that I ask?
- Am I perceived as credible?
Does my contact have access to the information that I am looking for?
How nice would it be to have a clear answer to each of those questions? The reality is that your objective is unique and will change with your needs. The Referral Institue’s article “Referral Nuggets” cites that the most common problem with generating referrals is that people don’t ask, and I would agree!
If you have multiple openings, it is vital to ask a new hire for a referral when they are most excited about the opportunity. Often people are willing to help other others, especially if there is no immediate threat of loss. Another thought is to institute a reward program for company employees. What is your game plan?
Make finding referrals a process that you revisit frequently and constantly rework. If you can broaden your approach odds are you will find more success at expanding your network.