Did you know that 70% to up to 80% of job openings are never published?
That’s where networking comes in. Network with the right people, and you may get your job via word of mouth.
But how the heck do you do that?
You may already have a network, but will that network actually do anything for you if you need it? Will it actually land you the job of your dreams when the time is right?
In this blog post, we’ll talk about how to build a network that will actually be worth its salt. Read on for some suggestions to take your career to the next level.
The saying, “it’s not real life, it’s just the Internet,” has never been so wrong. Nowadays, the Internet is real life, and you can get some amazing gigs and networking in via social media.
Start a social media page for yourself, and tweet about professional things that interest you and your career. Follow other professionals who are tweeting or Instagramming or posting in forums about what you’re interested in.
When you create a profile, make sure that you state your qualifications at the top. Often, people will be looking for someone with exactly your qualifications and will do a quick Google search to try and find you.
With your qualifications laid out at the top of your profile, you’ll come up immediately and people may be ready to offer you an opportunity.
Tweet or Instagram often enough for the big cheeses in your business to see you. Make sure you reply to threads. This is a great way for people to notice you and take an interest in your work.
Over time, you may become someone that they’ll want to at least offer an opportunity to interview for your dream job.
Join an Alumni Club
Most universities have clubs for graduates all over the country. Top tier schools will have clubs for graduates all over the world. Some swanky high schools may even have alumni clubs.
You all immediately have one thing in common: at one point, you went to the same school. It may not have been at the same time, or even for the same thing, but you’ll be able to bond over this shared experience in your lives.
If you live out of town, it’s a great opening line to find out when people moved to where you live now.
Your alma mater will no doubt have its share of successful professionals. As such, networking with them is a great way to discuss future jobs and future events.
Not only will you build a great foundation for a successful career, but you’ll also make some friends along the way.
Plus, nothing is as tight as school bonds. If potential employers feel they got a great education at their school and learned a great deal from it, they’ll know you have those skills too just from having gone there as well.
Attend Speakers’ Talks
If you’re interested in politics, you may find yourself watching this speaker on a Saturday night at a local conference or university. But hearing the speaker is only part of what the night can do for you. Of course, you’ll learn a lot from the person presenting, but you can also make it a great networking event.
You may ask yourself how listening to a speaker can help your career. Well, if you’re interested in growing your career, you’ll likely get to chatting with people after the fact. Once you’ve heard the speaker, there’s often a reception, so take the opportunity to introduce yourself, schmooze and talk to people about what it is you do.
Who knows? Maybe you’ll get a chance to introduce yourself to the speaker.
Participating in conferences is a fantastic way to network with other people in your field. Not only do conferences often offer speakers, but also offer social sessions that allow you to speak to others within your field and introduce yourself to them. Some conferences even offer workshops that allow you to interact with scholars and other individuals within your field.
If your field is academic in nature at all, apply to give presentations and papers at conferences. This is one great way to get potential employers to notice you and to network. You’ll be guaranteed an audience, as there will be a roomful of people who have chosen to attend your lecture.
With all eyes on you, start the show and make an impression!
Conventions are sometimes similar to conferences and can be an alternative to them, depending on the industry you’re in.
Attend as many conventions as possible, and participate in anything that shows off your skills. Always attend networking events so that you’re sure to meet people who are looking for those with your skills.
How to Build a Network: Start from Scratch
How to build a network may take a lot of rolling up your sleeves and doing some of the “dirty work,” but it will only help you in the long run. Remember, to always introduce yourself and be nice to everyone. You never know who is going to be at the top next, or who will know someone to connect you.
Just because someone doesn’t seem important, doesn’t mean they aren’t.
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