"Networking is an investment in your business. It takes time and when done correctly can yield great results for years to come." - Diane Helbig
THE FUTURE OF NETWORKING
Networking is one of the most effective ways to get the job you want and move up the ladder within your career. There once was a time where you had to literally walk the streets to fill out applications and wear your best outfit to attend a networking event to get a job.
Nowadays, building your network is moving in a new direction. The digital world has officially taken over and professionals can network online and attend events from the comfort of their couch. Networking has become so much more than meeting someone in person and asking them for a job.
Everything from your email signature, your interests on LinkedIn, or even the people you interact with while at lunch is a possible networking opportunity.
Three things should come to mind when you think of networking in today's professional atmosphere:
Intention, social media, and generosity.
Network with Intent
Before you plan to interact with others to network, figure out why you are doing it, and then prepare a plan for how to execute effectively. First, begin by writing down some clear-cut goals. Next, jot down the kind of people who you need to align yourself with that can help you to reach your goals.
Ask yourself these questions: "Where do the people I need to meet typically hang out? How can I reach them on social media? What social media apps are they using?" It is a great idea to brainstorm what kind of problems they could face and how you can fix them if you happen to be chatting with directors. Helping anyone solve their problems is always beneficial because it proves that you can provide value to the connection.
Honestly, social media has fully dominated the networking business. LinkedIn has become one of the most professional areas where you can digitally connect with co-workers and industry leaders in your field.
Facebook has made it possible to keep in contact with old classmates, family, and make new friends through Facebook Groups. Twitter and Instagram are now considered the online pubs and lounges to meet and connect with new contacts through photo and video content. You don’t have to go to the party looking to get hired at your next job on social media, which means you need to be strategic with your approach on the apps. Try connecting with people beyond career-based conversations before you consider talking about work-related topics. Chances are, people aren’t logging on to Instagram to look for people to hire, but to meet future co-workers but to build lasting friendships.
One of the more underrated qualities of being great at networking online is generosity. Believe it or not, kindness is something to offer everyone you interact with, and it goes a very long way. At CJE Consulting, we educate you on how you can utilize these methods to network at your best. The ability to tell your story through resumes, cover letters, and elevator pitches is a pivotal part of connecting with others, and being kind when you do is the perfect formula for successful networking!