There's much misunderstanding among candidates about this topic - How to approach a contact at one of your target companies, and what to ask for.
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Need your advice. One of my 1st contacts whom I have met in person, has a 1st contact in his network at a company I am researching for my next career challenge. He has agreed to introduce me. Would you recommend I send her an open application or ask for a networking meeting or directly ask about openings? I have very limited job search experience and will appreciate any thoughts you have.
Dear Name Withheld,
Why would you do either one?
Sending an open application likely results in your resume being passed into the same database as if you applied on a job board, and gives you little if any advantage (remember Employee Referral Bonus programs?).
Turning a networking meeting into an ambush interview will likely either completely turn off the target-company contact (and make your friend look bad) or if it goes well, may get your resume referred into the database.
Are any of these outcomes really what you hoped to gain?
Why not utilize your network more effectively, and gain more than just a pass through to an Applicant Tracking System? I give detail on how to leverage your contacts more effectively in Guerrilla Job Search Tactics .
Best of Luck,
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