Looking for a JOB - Step 8 - Join Organizations, Mentoring & Network
June 27, 2013
Looking for a job is a full time job -- plus overtime. Cold contacting local businesses is really ... uhhh ... character building. So mix it up a little.
Join any and all craft and professional organizations to network and gain access to job boards and job listings.
Look at organizations related to your field. Join at both the local and national levels that represent your field. I think students and others new to the field think that joining a professional organization is premature in their career. Wrong! Joining organizations will connect you to the job boards, mentoring and networking you need.
Some organizations may have opportunities for students or emerging artists. I know that SNAG is organizing a program called "Road2Success". "Road2Success will connect experienced SNAG members in our field with upcoming and mid-career talent. The focus of this program is on business and career skills. Through SNAG you will connect to the right people who can answer your questions about entrepreneurship and business and career development in a variety of industry sectors." "All SNAG members will be eligible to participate, but this pilot program will be limited to 200 on a first-come, first-served basis."
This is not the only mentoring program that I've discovered recently. For example, Michele Plante at University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign is organizing a mentoring program for their alumni. So it makes me wonder, have you contacted your alumni office? Do they have a professional development, alumni program or mentoring program you can tap into?
SNAG also has what they call SPRINGBOARD that includes employment listings in addition to internships, residencies, call for entries, workshops and more.
Crafthaus also has a "Job Listings" which also goes out in its weekly job listing. You do need to be a member to access the information, but the annual dues are modest, however, this is a juried site. Great photos are your key to success here. Network, comment, join discussions.
Online forums like Orchid/Ganoskin may also have job listings, or you could network as you become more familiar with the discussions. Reach out with a personal email.
Our local San Francisco Metal Arts Guild frequently has jobs posted in the newsletter. This is how I found several people that worked for me in my studio over the years.
These are just a few examples from the metals community, but every media has similar possibilities. I also noticed that LinkedIN sends a list of jobs related to your contacts and job skills every week in an email. Just another way to search for jobs.
Joining local, national and online organizations for your field or media will put you in contact with a variety of resources. This is where your pennies and dollars need to be wisely spent. JOIN. You will also find many new friends of all ages.
Harriete Estel Berman