In any professional community, networking is the key to success. Here are 4 useful tips you should try out for the best results.
Meet The Right People
Yes, you need to meet the right type of people. Start by defining your needs and goals. What do you hope to get from these contacts? Are you looking for a job or professional advice? Also, you need to find out the type of places where you can meet these people to help you achieve your outlined goals. Some ideal places for business networking meetings include job club meetings, professional conferences and fairs.
If you find yourself in these places, you need to break the ice with other professionals. Ideally, you need to get out of your comfort zone. Approach the people you are dying to meet and make the first move. You need to believe in yourself. It might not be very easy at first but with time you will have an idea of what to do. Remember, you will meet the right people at the right places. However, you need to be extremely proactive when meeting people.
Contact Your Potential Referral Connections
Besides meeting people who can help you advance in your career, you need to think about your referrals. Your references are a huge networking hub. People who have loved working by your side will always look forward to helping you advance your career.
You need to categorize your referral connections and ask for reference letters if necessary. These reference letters will help your contacts understand your capabilities. Your reference contacts need to know about your job search process and be grateful for the help they have offered you so far.
Eat, Sleep, Connect
You need to become a professional at connecting with people. With there being so many online platforms today, you don’t have to lag behind. LinkedIn is your first choice where you can get introductions to new contacts through your connections. Even better, you can maintain an exchange with your connections. Don’t forget about the other social media platforms such as Instagram, Twitter and Facebook where you can build strong relationships too. Currently, Facebook is being used by 2 billion people globally and it’s a great platform to find new networking opportunities.
Try out the ‘People I may know’ feature on Facebook. Previously, people were connected to each other by 6 degrees of separation. By 2016, Facebook announced that there are only 3.5 degrees that separate us. In simple terms, it means that we are connected to each person by about 3.57 steps. Social media is bringing everyone closer together. While on Twitter, you need to retweet as often as possible because you will never know which doors will open. Connecting is not that hard. It’s a habit you can add to your daily routine.
Build A Diverse Network
Your networking circle should include people from different industries, age groups, backgrounds and much more. That way, you can increase your opportunities, connections and insights. A diverse network also means you can include different genres of people such as coaches, mentors, visionaries and much more. If your networking circle is limited, you will have limited chances of connections and insights.