Knowing how to network can help you find new opportunities for career advancement and is a crucial skill when looking for a job. You can get a job recommendation or boost your skills by attending virtual or in-person networking events with people in your industry. There are several ways to network in person and online.
Below are tips to help you build professional and long-lasting network connections
What is networking?
Professional networking is the process of meeting other people to exchange information, make new professional contacts, and build valuable relationships. These connections are helpful when you are looking for a new job to develop your skills or to deepen your knowledge of the industry. You can get in touch with someone who works in the same field or company that you are interested in or who could provide you with a referral or business in the future. Knowing how to network will make it easier and faster for you to build valuable relationships.
How to Network Successfully
Learning the basics of networking makes it easier to build valuable connections with others. Whether you are attending business networking events in person or online, following these networking tips can boost your confidence:
Talk to new people at networking events.
Attend new events.
Create authentic relationships.
Bring a special business card.
Keep abreast with social media
Help others in your network.
Find new connections online who share similar interests to you.
5 Ways to Network Like a Pro
When attending a new event, try to greet at least five new people per hour so that you can spend about 10 minutes having a conversation with each person. During this time, you can discuss topics like your profession or hobbies to see if you have anything in common.
1. Talk or form a connection to new people at events
Take advantage of networking events by meeting as many new people as possible. Making new contacts can expand and improve your network, which increases your chances of receiving a new opportunity.
2. Attend new events
You may tend to attend the same types of networking events where you already know a lot of attendees. However, it may be beneficial to participate in other events, where you can possibly meet new people and diversify your interests and knowledge. There are many sources available online for finding new networking events. If you've been to college, there might be an alumni website that lists potential networking events that could prove fruitful.
3. Create meaningful relationships
Networking often involves talking to as many people as possible at an event or online. Making multiple quality connections can be more beneficial than engaging in multiple quick conversations, as you're more likely to make a lasting impression during a long, meaningful discussion. If you're at a networking event and feel like you can make a valuable connection with someone, try to find common goals and interests that can extend your conversation.
4. Make your business card or introduction unique
Most people who attend a networking event in person will bring business cards to trade. To stand out, consider creating a unique business card that is relevant to your industry and will stand out from the rest.
For example, if you are a professional photographer, you can customise your business card designs to look like a camera. A creative business card will likely inspire people to reconnect with you after the event.
5. Have confidence in yourself
Having confidence in yourself at a networking event can help you navigate the opportunity successfully and create more valuable connections. Stay updated with industry trends, and do not doubt the value of your skills and experience.