A Cheat Sheet on Networking in the Startup World

Startups have always found its’ own definition in the business world.

Most often than not, the only way to get that dream job (when it comes to dealing with startups) is to nurture one’s networking skills which is vital as the job market gets more and more competitive.

Since startups have always been different in terms of their hiring strategy, traditional networking probably would not do the magic.

If entering the world of startups is what you aim for, here are 4 networking tips that might actually help you land the job.


Understand Your Stuff

The people who pull the strings behind startups are experts. If you are going to pretend like you know enough, my friend I’m afraid that the odds are against you. They’ll probably see through you and know you’re faking so better admit if you don’t know enough.

Startups basically emerge from the Internet. Thousands of free resources you can use to learn the ABCs of startups are surely available there. This doesn’t mean that you have to be an expert yourself.

You just have to know enough to become confident and comfortable while talking with a hiring manager (often times a founder in an early stage startup!) about the job. The knowledge you have together with the passion you have will surely make them notice you.


Maintain a Small List

Traditional networking involves going out there and making sure your name is recognized by as many different and important people as you possibly can. Maintaining contact with the people in the startup business is very important for startups are more personal. Make sure that when you identify people you want to connect with, it is small enough to make regular contact with them.

Teaching people about their work is one of the things startup executives enjoy. Ask for advice on how professionals got to where they are when you talk to them. This may seem insignificant but it will show that you have passion for the business and open to learn and try new things.

Another important thing to remember is to choose your contacts wisely. Entrepreneurs who you think have the most to offer will surely make a good pick. Make sure that you, too, have something to offer as well.


Being Proactive is the Key

Applying for a job when there is not any open posting marks a person who is confident enough in his abilities.

“Sorry, but we are currently not hiring,” sounds like what the answer they’re going to give you. Still, ask them what they need so you can improve your chances of getting the job when an opportunity arises in the future.

This will show the current startup team that you’re not just someone who passed by and decided to get a job. Instead, they will perceive that you are interested in them.


It’s a 2-Way Street

People in the startup business are often focused on what the other person can give without thinking what they can offer in return. They connect purely out of business interests. These founders and presidents understand this. But when you show that you are able to help the more they’ll be willing to help you.


Next read… 6 steps to be super efficient


Article contributed by Startup Jobs Asia‘s Team.

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