Reflections on the Kindness of Strangers (and Friends)

At this relatively early stage in my job search journey, I’ve been following the conventional wisdom and focusing mostly on networking. Frankly, I’ve been flabbergasted by how helpful and generous people have been. I’ve found it very easy to get people to sit down and give me advice on where I should look, how I might better market myself, and other people I should talk to. The feedback has been very useful, and I now have a backlog of people I can contact.

A few of the useful tidbits I received: ways to improve my online presence and monitor some thought leaders, a few tweaks to make in my experience descriptions, and some suggestions on industry certifications to consider.
I’m even being considered for a potential short-term assignment in a completely new field. This assignment is way out of my area of expertise, and may not end up working out, but it just goes to show what can come out of interactions with others.

To me the most astonishing thing of all is that I got a complete stranger to agree to meet me. I found this person on LinkedIn. She works for an organization I’m interested in, has a fascinating background, and most amazingly, agreed to give up some of her free time to help a total stranger. I’m looking forward to meeting this marvelous person in a few days.
Another skill I’m updating in my quest: knowing where the nice independent cafes in the region are.

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