What are the fundamentals of job development?
Higher Peer Advisor Carol Tucker from Lutheran Family Services of Nebraska in Omaha weighed in on this important question during a breakout session on job development at our Third Annual Refugee Employment Workshop in Denver.
Here is what she had to say:
1. Always be ready to talk, meet people and have conversations that represent your organization and clients. Have a “philosophy of friendliness.” Always carry your business cards, and always be looking for opportunities to network. Think of it as sewing seeds – things will not always work out immediately, but with time some of those seeds will grow into wonderful employer partnerships.
2. Build trust. Take your cues from the employer and respond accordingly. Share your process, but respect theirs and adjust when necessary. Your goal is to become their “go-to” person. You’ll also build trust by providing ongoing support. Check in regularly and provide helpful materials such as an employer FAQ sheet, cultural backgrounders, or information about the the legal status, documentation and rights that refugees and asylees possess. Be responsive and ready to take action if they call upon you with a problem or need.
3. Leverage all your resources. Think creatively about ways to increase your capacity and connections. Be intentional about partnering with your development department, with faith communities, and with community volunteers.
4. Help employers become partners. Provide opportunities for your employer partners to share their values through involvement – career mentoring, coat drives, world refugee day, family mentoring, or charitable giving. This will help employers not only value your services but be invested in welcoming refugees to the community.
5. Overwhelm them with your passion, love and faith in refugees. Passion is contagious. People know when you are genuine and when you are sold on your product.
For more tips from Carol, check out this video interview!
Have more job development fundamentals to share? Leave a comment below, or share your thoughts with us at firstname.lastname@example.org.