How to network efficiently
By: Rachael, redwigwam
Wherever you are in your career, networking is essential for your future prospects.
Whether you are looking for a promotion, want to break into another field or sector, or to go it alone, networking can help you do so in a more efficient, beneficial, and probably quicker manner.
You can network within your current company or outside of it; either way, you’ll be making the acquaintance of people who could potentially help you progress in your career. And sometimes in ways that may surprise you.
There are ways to network properly though. Here are a few of them:
Don’t wait until the last minute
Networking is about making contacts across a range of areas, at various times in your career. And any professional will be able to detect when you are just ‘networking’ as a last-minute attempt to get a new job. Be smart about it and network even when you’re not looking to gain something from it straight away. This way when you do have a load of CVs to give out, you’ve already made your contacts and will be taken much more seriously.
Keep your ego in check
Whether you’re at a networking event or talking to somebody in your place of work, you should never dismiss somebody as unimportant because you think they’re no use to you or can’t help you. Mainly because it is a terrible attitude to have and is downright rude; but also because any future information or help you may need could come from the most unlikely places.
Know your worth
Knowing what your strengths are, and what qualities and skills you bring to the table is always going to go in your favour. People will respect your confidence in your own abilities and will be more likely to remember you if you know exactly what you’re capable of.
Being selfish gets you nowhere
If you go to networking events or attempt to network with people inside your company with the sole purpose of benefiting yourself and no one else, then be prepared to be disappointed.
Remember, everyone else is also likely to be trying to establish their own network. So if you have the chance to be part of their network and help them – even if you feel they cannot offer you much in return, then do so. It pays to be nice and it pays to be professional. As I said previously, you never know who may be of assistance to you in the future, so don’t burn bridges before you’ve even built them. People will always be able to tell if you’re selfishly only out to better yourself and nothing more.
Social media can be a good thing
I cannot stress enough just how helpful LinkedIn in particular can be when it comes to establishing networks! It is the ultimate social media platform on which to market yourself and your achievements. Make sure you connect with other professionals or potential employers!
Networking is a significant aspect of climbing the career ladder. Do it right and it can do wonders for you. Hopefully, these few tips help!