How Networking Works
Have you ever asked yourself “what is networking and how networking works?”
As statistics show, the majority of job vacancies are occupied through networking, therefore, having good networking skills is very important to anyone who wants to advance their career.
This is not only relevant to fresh graduates who want a job; this is relevant to entrepreneurs, freelancers, and people who have been in the field for a while but want to make a shift.
Pretty much anyone can benefit from fine-tuning their networking skills. Here are seven tips for networking that will take your game to a whole new level….
1. Start with Social Media
Up until a very recent period of time, the majority of networking happened face-to-face. However, with the rise of technology advancement and the shift of working from home, virtual networking has become as popular, (if not more popular), than face-to-face meetings.
Therefore, if you are trying to build a strong network, it is highly recommended that you work on your online presence.
Aside from social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, virtual platforms for professional networking have been on the rise lately and are readily at your disposal.
2. Meet New People
The easiest way to get to know someone is if someone introduces you to them. This doesn’t mean that you can’t or shouldn’t try to approach people yourself, but it is a lot more efficient if you have someone “refer” you to them.
This way, you already have a basis upon which you can approach that person when you need a professional favor.
3. Build Your CV Professionally
If you’re networking for the purpose of getting a job, one way to make it a lot more efficient is by sending out your resume for advice.
For starters, when you get the advice of people involved in your desired field, you will be able to fine-tune your resume and improve it.
However, the main purpose of this is to show other people in the field your credentials and experience. The more people in your circle are aware of your qualifications, the more likely they are to refer you to suitable vacancies that they encounter.
4. Don’t Be Blunt
Imagine that you are an entrepreneur, an executive at a big company, or simply someone in a position in which you can present other people with opportunities.
You are at a dinner party, and all of a sudden someone who is a complete stranger to you approaches you and bluntly asks for a job. Would you really offer them a job that way? Probably not. Therefore, the moral of this story is: don’t be too blunt.
This will make you come off as insensitive and opportunistic. Instead, approach that person by introducing yourself and speaking about the field for a bit. Then, after having gauged the mood and established some rapport, you can ask if an opportunity is available.
5. Be Straightforward
While being too blunt is unfavorable, the complete opposite is not ideal as well. It is important to provide a good introduction that would help you get an opportunity. However, don’t get carried away, as people hate it when someone is taking too much of their time.
Imagine you are that same executive at that party and this random stranger has been talking about the weather and sports for the past twenty minutes. Would you give them an opportunity?
Probably not, you might think that they are unprofessional and their continuous blabbering might stimulate your irritation. Therefore, it is very important to be concise.
6. Listen First
Remember this: Networking is not a presentation; it is a conversation. While it is very important to mentally prepare what you want to say to someone to get to know them, you need to remember that they have a role in the conversation as well.
Always give the person space to speak and engage in the conversation with you. People like to know that they are being heard, therefore, doing so will ensure the smooth going of your interaction with them.
7. Say Thank You
This tip is very important for multiple reasons. First, it will ensure that the conversation has ended on a positive note regardless of its actual outcome of it.
Moreover, by concluding the conversation with “Thank You”, you are invoking the Ben Franklin effect. Psychological studies have shown that you tend to like people for whom you did a favor.
Now, even if the person hasn’t done you favor yet, telling them “Thank you” will give them the illusion that they did so, which will make them like you more. If they like you, they are more likely to help you get an opportunity.
By now you are aware of the 7 most essential tips on how networking works, taking these tips into consideration will help you in your professional life.
Not to mention that nowadays, it’s crucial to know how networking works and develop these skills for the sake of better personal achievements in life.
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