Ask Jackye: Three Million Networking Contacts and Counting

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Oct 18, 2011

How do you source for high demand diversity professionals?

Great question! I had a boss who always told me, “You have over three million people to choose from in the U.S. alone!” Sure there are, but you and I both know that there are not three million qualified, ready, and willing candidates. And diverse candidates are not always easy to find. So get your message out there and let everyone you get in contact with know that you are sourcing for a position for a company with a focus on diversity!

Search and Stay in Touch with your Pipeline

A good sourcer of a company promoting diverse talent is always filling their pipeline with great candidates. Not to sound like “Master of the Obvious” but reactionary sourcing can be a mess! Make sure to always stay in touch with your best candidates and ask for referrals. ASK, ASK, ASK! Start a robust referral program and see the candidates pour in. There are several ways to do this.

Job Advertising and Job  Posting

If you advertise your positions, cast a W-I-D-E net! Make your postings as diverse as you desire your candidates to be. Always check your local resources. There are several minority Chambers of Commerce in most communities as well as periodicals that target LGBT, disabled veterans, and other candidates who are underrepresented. Place ads in these places.

Network With Organizations That Target Diverse Membership

What color, age, and/or gender is your network? Who knows you? It is imperative that you are out and active in all types of groups. Check out professional organizations focused on minorities as well and be active! For example, check out this Directory of Minority Organizations I found. Don’t worry if you are not a part of the group; most are open to all for guests. While you are there, don’t forget to network! Get to know the people around you. But always stay active. Too many people go once or twice and expect magic to happen. It is all about relationships. Your relationships are the foundation of networking. Network often, get involved and build relationships.

Check Organizations that have a Diverse Membership

When sourcing executive candidates, start with some of the Master of Business Administration (MBA) associations. Truly, having your MBA makes you pretty diverse alone! There are a TON of minority MBA associations. One such organization that I am new to is Reaching out. Reaching Out MBA started in 1999 and “has a singular purpose to empower LGBT MBA students to become professionals who will lead the way to equality in business education, in the workplace, and throughout society.”

Use Targeted Searches

Using, the group names from the research you have done on organizations, search “LinkedIn Groups.” You can also use a specific custom Google search, for example:

(intitle:resume OR inurl:resume) accounting And -job -jobs -sample -samples -template -”resume service” -”resume writers” -”resume writing” AND (305 OR 786 OR 561) AND (FL OR Florida) AND (woman OR women)

Of course plug in the information that is relevant to you.

Summits and Conferences

Go to large summits and conferences. I was recently at the Women in Technology International: Women Powering Technology Summit. I thought the vendors were trying to sell something but no. eBay, AMD, USAA, Texas Instruments and others represented over 4000 open jobs! Were you there looking for candidates?

So yes, there are over 3 million people in the U.S. to choose from. You can’t meet all of them by staying at your desk! Get out there and ASK ASK ASK!!!

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