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You have been looking for a job for an extended period of time. You have had a couple interviews, yet heard nothing. Your frustration level is rising. Each day you sit at your computer and forward your résumé to company after company regarding positions that are suitable, and some that are not.

You even lowered your expectations, only to be told that you are overqualified.

This has been going on for months. What’s wrong? Should you start doing something different? Look for positions in other states?

You attend a job fair. The facility is filled with job seekers. You stand in line after line. When you finally have the opportunity to talk to someone, a young clerk from the human resources department of a company, she refuses to take your résumé, and tells you to go to their company website to see if there are suitable positions for you. Shucks, you could have done that without attending the job fair.

You conduct some research, and find some employment agencies. Hopeful, you email them your résumé. You hear nothing from them, so you call. They tell you politely they have nothing for someone with your experience.

You research job search methods. You read several studies. You analyze each of the methods listed on these studies, and come to the following conclusions: Most job search methods take a passive approach. When you send your résumé to an employment agency, or headhunter, or leave it at a job fair &mdash you wait for a call, or email, from the company. You answer an opening on a company website, or on-line, and you wait for a phone call. You utilize a direct mail concept, and send your résumé to the human resources department at more than 100 companies, and wait for a phone call. The common thread in these approaches: you wait for them to call.

Further review of those Job Search studies show you that networking is, statistically, the most effective job search method. And when you utilize this method, you are proactive. You make the call. You make something happen.

Like anything else in life, when you go after something, the likelihood of success is greatly enhanced. But, you ask, what is networking? It is simply: People communicating with people. Whether it is your best friend, a former colleague, or a suitable decision maker at an organization that would be logical for you to approach &mdash like a competitor of your last employer &mdash you make the contact. You are proactive.

Look at your life: When you really want something, you go after it. You make it happen. You are proactive. The same should be true of your Job Search. You must be proactive. You must network.

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