One of the tips you may get when applying for a job or looking for career opportunities is to get someone from “inside” the company to help you out. These people can vouch for you and increase your chances of getting these opportunities.
But, not all people like having to socialise to build connections for business, and a few don’t enjoy socialising, period. What can you do to make networking easier if this is your situation, even if you don’t want to do it? Here are some tips you can do:
1. Start With The People You Know
You can do networking even at home or within your social community, as some of them may already be in the industry you want to enter. You can easily ask them to give you advice or put in a good word for you, and they will provide it easily because they already know who you are. Aside from your family and friends, you can also start networking with your classmates and professors.
2. Don’t Be Afraid To Talk To People
Contrary to popular belief, networking isn’t complicated because it can begin immediately by talking to people, and the rest is supplementary to strengthening your appeal to these people. When you find someone who has your interest, speak to them and ask them more about the topics they spoke about. Once you start talking, it will be smooth sailing from there.
3. Prepare Your Information In Advance
When you think you have built up a good connection with these potential contacts, you should ensure that you have your information ready for them to check. Have a business card in your person before going to the event, and make sure it has all your contact information and your title. Giving a business card to potential contacts can open opportunities for follow-ups and recommendations.
4. Follow Up With Your New Contact
If you managed to create a good connection with a potential contact and you have shared contact details, don’t be afraid to follow up two days after your first meeting. If you don’t do it within this period, they may forget what you spoke about and forget you entirely. Aside from emailing or calling them, follow them on their social media accounts and interact with their posts.
5. Know Where To Start Networking
For networking to be productive, you should pick suitable events and places to network yourself. Networking can be done anywhere, from your home to your community. If you are a new job seeker, college is the best place to start networking and attend alumni or job fairs events. You can also ask the help of your college’s career services office to find out more events where you can network.
6. Be Realistic
Be realistic regarding your expectations of how these networking events will go. There is no guarantee these people will do what you hope for and get you a pass in the company you want to be a part of. When going to these networking events, come with an open mind and be there to build connections. Once you do, you will find yourself welcoming opportunities you never expected.
Networking shouldn’t be something you should fear because it can help open more doors for your career. Whether you don’t like to do it or fear it, which is why you are avoiding it, there are easy ways to do it without feeling awkward or forced to do so. Check the tips I listed above and see how simple it is to find like-minded individuals who can guide you through your career journey.
Don’t procrastinate. Start reaching out today.
Please allow me explain why networking is important in your career through these articles:
What is a Network Letter and How It Can Help You To Build Connections (with samples!)
6 Golden Tips to Build a Powerful Network Using LinkedIn
4 Steps to Use Your Network to Land You Your First Job