5 Ways to Repay Connections for Helping with a Job Search

Congratulations. You’ve landed your dream job. The research, preparation and hard work paid off, and you should feel very proud of yourself.

Before the flurry of new job jitters take hold, pause to pat yourself on the back. Then use the conclusion of your successful job search to celebrate with those who helped you along the way.

It’s unlikely your job hunt was a solo adventure, so be sure to thank everyone. And I do mean everyone. Thank the people who promised to help and never did. Thank those whose leads didn’t amount to anything. Thank them all because your perception and theirs might differ; always err on the side of applying liberal amounts of praise.

It’s imperative that you show extreme gratitude for every word of encouragement, bit of advice and attempts to provide assistance that were extended during your time of need. I advocate not just saying “thanks” but demonstrating it.

Here are five ways to repay your connections:

  • Close the loop –Let every connection who was aware of your search know that you’ve landed a new job. When you announce your new position, demonstrate humility and gratitude. A change to your LinkedIn profile isn’t enough. Send personal notes or emails.
  • Send a gift for direct help – I tend to send champagne when a single person played a significant and direct role in my search. Any thoughtful gift will demonstrate that you understand the lengths someone went to help you.
  • Stay in touch forever– A few weeks ago I had coffee with the person who gave me the lead that led to my first job in 1999. I regularly talk to the people who aided my 2005 and 2011 job searches. When’s the last time you’ve spoken to the people who helped you the most?
  • Don’t forget the hiring manager – A new-hire who started during my college internship famously sent her new boss a bouquet of balloons after the interview. It worked for her, and even if this extreme example isn’t appropriate for your industry or profession you can still find a suitable way to thank those who interviewed you.
  • Pay it forward – The repayment period is never-ending. Continue fulfilling your duty to job seekers by advising, consoling or assisting every job seeker who requests your counsel. Just think of all the good job karma you will build in the process. In the world of networking, repayment is the same currency as pre-payment.

Whatever you do in the aftermath of your job search will be remembered. There’s no better way to celebrate your most recent achievement than by immediately starting to set yourself up for future networking success.

Want more tips on the art of following up with your network? Download a free copy of The Foolproof Guide to Jumpstarting Your Transformation into a Person of Influence.