It’s day number… I don’t know what day it is.

To cope with this crisis, I try to get out of the house each day. I have been taking frequent walks in my neighborhood.

There is something different happening.

I have seen more people and neighbors out of their house (6 feet away of course) more than ever before.

The most interesting thing is that EVERYONE says Hello.  If you are from other parts of the country, that may not seem so strange. But for our neighborhood in a northeast suburb where everyone is on the go, rushing all the time and seems to have a “me first” mentality, this is new.

Candidly, I really like it. Some people just say hello with a big smile. Others engage in conversation about the weather, how we are just muddling through, or a desire to be on a golf course on a beautiful day. People who are strangers, who I have never met or spoken to, easily engage and are happy to do so.

We are happy to connect.  Just humans craving some live interaction.

I call this the “Hello” phenomenon.

This relates to the advice I give my clients.

Many clients have been reaching out sharing their fears and frustrations with this situation. They say…

“My internship just got canceled!”

“My daughter is about to graduate. How can she look for a job now?”

“My son is stuck. He thinks the job search is fruitless. No one wants to talk to him.”

I think the “Hello” phenomenon can help young job seekers right now. 

Here’s why.

Most young job seekers know they should network but are afraid to do it.

Many are intimidated and think people don’t have the time or energy to speak with a young candidate.

They have no idea what to say.

Say Hello.

People are craving human connection. They may have some more down-time. They want to feel needed. People are more inclined to get on a quick call or video chat to provide job guidance and support to a recent grad because they were in their shoes too.

We all started out as recent grads trying to figure out the next step.

The advice I give to young job seekers is to say “hello” to contacts… even those you have never met.

The conversation does not need to be complicated. Say Hello. Ask if they and their families are doing ok. Share why you are interested in speaking with them and ask if there a way for you to help them. Maybe this becomes a freelance or shadow position.

You never know. The person you just said Hello to might be the link to your next job.