Even when you are not actively applying for a position, continue to network. This is where social media can be extremely useful. Use your business or social network to find someone who knows someone who can make a useful introduction or serve as a mentor. You can join groups related to your job search on LinkedIn as a start. But you can also search for social groups with financial industry experts on Facebook.
Often overlooked, Meetup groups are another way to help expand your base of network contacts. Depending on where you live, you may find regular events in your area for like-minded individuals you can meet in person in a social setting. This is a great way to get your face and name out there to people who may be able to help you out in your job search.
Another helpful activity is to join the local trade association. If you live in New York, for example, and have your sights set on becoming a security analyst, join the New York Society of Security Analysts. If you are not in New York, find your local chapter. These types of associations can lead to invaluable networking opportunities.
Landing a glamorous investment banking analyst position at a large bank on Wall Street right out of college may not be realistic. But Wall Street success stories follow many trajectories. Consider working for a boutique firm or a large corporation or pursue any opportunity that promises to provide experience in finance and eventual connections to Wall Street.