I have a friend who is in a job search. My friend is mad. He’s hurt, wounded, depressed, sad, and feels incompetent.
But really, he’s MAD.
He’s mad at the people responsible for him being in this job search. (You might not be mad, but if you are overly hurt, wounded, depressed, sad, etc. and it shows, this post is for you)
Okay, I get it. I’m mad too, and it’s been almost FOUR YEARS! The problem with him, though, is that everyone knows he’s mad.
And people feel bad for him, and some get mad with him, and no one blames him for feeling MAD.
But no one is ready to really help him. No one is ready to spend their “relationship capital” on him for one simple reason: they are not willing to risk their relationship capital when it might backfire.
Since he is so mad, the introduction might backfire. You see, when I spent time to nurture a relationship, I don’t want it jeopardized by someone who is MAD… someone who I “highly recommend that you chat with.”
I would not give an intro to someone who will ruin my relationship capital. This person needs to figure out how to talk about what has happened with him Here are some key thoughts:
- Be concise. What happened to you has happened to… well, almost anyone who has been working for a few years. I don’t want to hear every detail… just sum it up and let me know that you are in transition.
- Don’t be negative. As you tell “your side” of the story you might make yourself look like a risk. Was there a reason you were let go? Was it performance-related? Where you a legal liability? And, if you are talking this way about your old boss, how are you going to talk about ME? You should be able to figure out a way to explain why you are in transition that does not make you look bad, nor does it make you look like a whiny gossip, nor does it make you look like you are anxious to spread the bad word about your past employer (which I might one day become).
- Make an impression about YOU. You have a few seconds to make an impression and share a message – why would you take precious time to talk about something that really doesn’t matter, or help you in any way?
I know that it sucks, and I’m not suggesting you have to be a Pollyanna, but beware of how you communicate your why, let you turn off your network contacts.