Monday, April 16, 2012

5 Tips On Maintaining Social Contacts While In Career Transition

Deborah Sweeney, Contributor
West Coast CEO who knows small business and entrepreneurs.

Recently, I had several members at my company celebrate their first year anniversary of working within their current job positions. The key word here is celebrate, especially noteworthy since they were all millennials. As fellow Forbes contributor J. Maureen Hendersonpointed out in her post on whether loyalty was for losers or not, for the millennial generation a year in the exact same position is the equivalent of a decade on their watch. But the overall consensus rings true both in her column as well as within reality: if a millennial (or Gen-Y’er or Boomer) is happy at work and they know it, stay put.
I don’t doubt I’ll eventually see members of my team exit for a different position down the line. But leaving a job title gracefully in today’s job market requires more than just a speedy resignation letter written during your lunch break and a box to clean out the desk with.
The real farewell is going to involve you and your Outlook inbox.
Few organizations allow you to keep your email address once you’re out of the company for good and it’s important to let everyone you communicate with, whether on a daily basis or not, know about this. Because all of those PR pros, social media gurus, reporters, affiliates, and assorted business minded folk are going to be pretty confused if they try to email you and the reply that bounces back says the email couldn’t be delivered- the online equivalent of having fallen off of the face of the earth. And not everyone will think to immediately assume you’re switching jobs either.
To avoid looking MIA with your connections while in the midst of a career transition, put these five tips to use.
1) Tie up loose connection ends
Once you’re out of the company, you’re out. Everything that is sent over to your account from there on you won’t be allowed to view or control from mass newsletter subscriptions to personal messages. For those who use their company address for less than professional reasons, guess who gets to review whatever arrives on the daily? Hint: not you. Make sure early on to notify your contacts that you won’t be the one receiving emails sent to that address in a quick and friendly note before your departure.
2) Gather ’round LinkedIn
To say with certainly that you’ll stay with the next company you transition to for a long while is impossible to predict which is why we love LinkedIn as a hub spot for connecting. Mention in your moving on note to potential business contacts (not the customers of the current employer) that you’re on the site and encourage they add you as a connection there. These connections will carry over no matter what job title you have and help maintain your business relationships for the future.

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