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Networking with Precision: How to Turn Every Call into a Career Leap

Navigating the high seas of career progression in the competitive world of investment banking requires more than just a well-maintained network; it demands a strategic approach to networking that many overlook. This was a lesson Robert, a compliance director at a major investment bank, learned the hard way.

The Challenge of Unfocused Networking

Robert’s career seemed on an upward trajectory, yet his recent efforts to climb further were floundering. With a subpar bonus and personal financial pressures mounting, he knew a job change was imperative. His network was vast, but his calls were misfiring, leading nowhere.

Why? They lacked the one thing that turns networking from a social call into a career catalyst: precision.

A Revelation in Strategy

The realization struck Robert after several disappointing calls. His approach was too vague, asking if friends knew of "any opportunities." What he needed was a laser-focused strategy. Networking isn’t just about who you know; it’s about how you engage them.

The Art of the Specific Ask

Robert started using a new plan with three key components:

  1. Pinpoint Targets: Instead of casting a wide net, he narrowed down to 20 companies that genuinely interested him.

  2. Map the Path: He utilized LinkedIn not just as a social platform but as a strategic tool, pinpointing which of his contacts connected directly to key people at these companies.

  3. Craft Specific Asks: Each call was tailored. He didn’t just seek general help; he asked for introductions to specific individuals who could decisively influence his career trajectory.

This approach didn’t just change the way Robert networked; it transformed the responses he received. His contacts could now see clear, easy ways to help him, making them more likely to engage positively.

Results that Speak

The change was dramatic. Not only did Robert’s calls start yielding results, but they also led to a major career move—a switch to a rival firm with a 40% salary increase. It was a direct result of his targeted networking strategy.

How to Implement This in Your Career

Robert’s story isn’t unique, but his strategy is not commonly applied as effectively. Here’s how you can replicate his success:

  • Zero in on Your Goals: Know exactly what you want from your networking efforts. Vague requests yield vague results.

  • Utilize Tools Strategically: Leverage platforms like LinkedIn to create a precise map of your network’s value.

  • Be Bold in Your Asks: Specificity in your requests makes it easier for others to say yes and act on your behalf.

Transform your network from a passive resource into an active career accelerator. Reach out with clarity and purpose, and watch as doors open.

Ready to elevate your approach?

Email me to refine your networking skills and achieve the results you deserve.


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Mike Mittleman is a career coach whose business focuses on investment banking finance professionals based in the NY/CT/NJ tri-state area, helping navigate their career paths with confidence and success. For more tips and personalized coaching, visit



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