Your career network should be in place for when you need it, both for job searching and for moving up the career ladder. Since you never know when you might need it, it makes sense to have an active career network.
Career networking is the use of personal, professional, academic, or familial contacts to help with a job hunt, attain career objectives, or learn more about your industry or another field in which you’d like to work. Networking might help you learn about career prospects or gain access to a firm you want to work for.
- Include the right people. Your professional network should include everyone who can help you with a job search or a career change. Past and present coworkers, employers, pals with similar interests, colleagues from business associations, alumni from your university, or contacts encountered through internet networking services can all be included. Your network can also include relatives, neighbours, and anybody else who may have a helpful link.
- Know what your career network can do for you. Almost 8 out of 10 job searchers think their network has assisted them in finding jobs. More than just job leads, networking contacts may give references or insider knowledge about firms you might be interested in working for. They can provide you advice on potential career paths or what the work market is like on the other side of the nation. Your network can help you find job opportunities or analyse your résumé.
- Keep in touch and work your network. When you have been laid off or decide to hunt for a new work, don’t merely call those that can assist you. Maintain frequent contact with your network, even if it’s only a quick email to say hello and inquire how they’re doing. When others know who you are, they are more ready to assist you.
- Give something back to your career network.Networking should not be one-way. Share any intriguing articles or job listings you come across with your network. The purpose of establishing a career network is to have resources that can assist you, but you should also reciprocate whenever possible.
- Keep track of your network.Keep a record of your own professional network someplace. Make sure you know who is who, where they work, and how to contact them, whether electronically or on paper.
- Network online. LinkedIn, Facebook, and other online networking platforms may help you connect with other networkers at certain firms, with college ties, or in a specific geographic region. Furthermore, if you are a college graduate, your institute may offer an alumni professional network to which you might gain access. When networking with strangers, be sure you know what you want. Are you seeking for information about the company? Do you want to learn about job openings? Be clear in your request.
- Attend networking events, In-person networking is effective. Attend a meeting or a mixer if you are a member of a professional association. Many of the attendees will share your ambitions and will be happy to exchange business cards. Attend any alumni networking events hosted by your college alma mater (many colleges have these around the country). There are several sorts of networking events to attend, and there are methods to expand your network without ever attending an event.
“Networking is critical because it exposes one to a broader network of contacts, thus giving one greater exposure to an audience which may impact one’s career positively. Once you start networking, you’ll find that it creates a ripple effect thereby expanding your network and increasing possibilities for opportunities. It also broadens your knowledge, exposes you to critical career enhancing information, and allows you the opportunity to tap into an experienced audience that can offer psychosocial support and industry specific insight.”Dr Nceba Ndzwayiba (Transformation Director Netcare)
To read the full article, visit: “The Importance of Career Networking“.