The Importance of Networking (and Tips for Success)12 Aug 2020
In business, success is often about who you know. For that reason alone, networking is a critical aspect of growing as a professional and taking all the right steps in your career. After all, if people in your industry know who you are and how good you are at your job, they’re far more likely to help you find that next great stepping stone.
Of course, networking is about more than just finding job opportunities – it’s also about gaining insights into the industry and your own work, and gives you an outlet to bounce your ideas off people without worrying about how it might affect your company. Career Addict notes that the benefits of a good networking strategy become evident as your network grows. The more professionals you have to talk with about the direction of your career or the industry as a whole, the broader the array of perspectives and opinions you can tap to gain insight and expertise.
The question, then, is how you either establish or continually grow your network? The following tips should help throughout your career building process:
Rely on social media
Especially with everyone still being cautious around the novel coronavirus pandemic, networking in person isn’t always an option. Instead, it’s a good idea to reach out to experts in your industry for advice online, via popular social media platforms like LinkedIn or Twitter. These days, that’s just as valid an introduction method as an in-person handshake and exchange of pleasantries. You just have to be careful about how you reach out, because just asking for advice or recommendations on how to find a job may not be met with the warmest response.
Ask for introductions
On occasion, you may hear someone you know through your career mention that they know someone else whose work or opinion you admire, but whom you’ve never met. Asking for an introduction from a mutual acquaintance will often be a good idea as it can make for a smoother first conversation.
Plan your efforts
As with anything else in business, it’s good to improve your network with some kind of plan in mind. The Science of People noted that you might want to make a list of who you know, and who you think they know, so that you can make a sort of “networking tree” and figure out how to get in touch with various people. You can then update this information regularly as your network grows.
Now that you know the basics of starting or growing your network, you may need a little help to really take that great first step. ICML’s Professional Networking training programme will equip you with the tools you need – customised to your unique wants and needs. From skills related to just having an industry-focused conversation to figuring out the ideal experts to reach out to next, you’ll get the full view of what it takes to become a networking master. Get in touch with us today to learn more about what ICML can do for you and your personal effectiveness.