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Search tip 4: Build your network

The first few days in a job search can offer a flurry of activity. It can be tough to keep up momentum. Today is the third of 10 posts sharing concrete to-dos for your search.

Layoffs can feel lonely. It can feel awkward to interact with former peers who still have jobs, especially when asking for help. Yes, companies like Meta, Amazon, and Stripe are laying off thousands, but tens of thousands more people remain at those companies, appearing to enjoy continued career success. That can make those navigating their layoffs feel even more alone.

Unfortunately, this feeling can turn into a self-fulfilling prophesy. Reaching out gives you a chance to work through this process with others. To get started, consider the following:

Give yourself time to mourn. It’s ok to feel shocked/upset after a layoff. Be kind to yourself. Order your favorite drink/meal. Go for a walk to clear your head. Hit a punching bag. Whatever it is, just be kind to yourself.

Before you’re ready to start reaching out, you can start planning. Schedule an hour to make a list of all the people who could help you. It doesn’t have to just be people who can help you get a job, but anyone who can help with aspects of your job search. Someone who always makes you laugh? Put them on the list! Someone can introduce you to others at a company of interest? Put them on the list! Someone can review your resume/cover letter? They're on the list too! Someone can provide you honest feedback on your candidacy? You get the idea!

Revisit the list and add more names. Send holiday cards? Check to see if they’re on your list. Regularly catch-up with extended family? Great, add them to the list. People from school you haven’t talked to in a while? Add them. People who you work out with, watch sports with, etc. Add them too.

Leave some people off your list. While you’re brainstorming your list, it’s okay to acknowledge that some people should be actively left off your list. Do you always find yourself in a negative headspace when you talk with someone? Leave them off your list. It’s okay to say “no” to manage your energy.

When you’re ready, set yourself a clear schedule. Includes at least an hour every day to reach out to people on your list. The people you'll each out to will want to help! While email or social can be helpful, it can be more productive to pick up the phone or schedule a zoom to reconnect. As you gain introductions, add them to your list, and start tracking your outreaches (even if just on an excel spreadsheet). You can download a template here (

Undoubtedly, you will discover that you have more support than you think! This support that will help you navigate one of the bigger challenges you may ever face, and be stronger for it.

As always, connect if you need help, or know someone who does.

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