Many people find networking an uncomfortable activity, but the fact is that a healthy network of friends and professionals can help you find, and even achieve, promising career opportunities. While you can build a top-notch resume and market yourself online from the safety and comfort of your home, networking can still take people out of their comfort zones. Because of this, most individuals steer clear of trying to make these connections. Let’s take a closer look at how you can empower yourself for success with a positive approach to networking.
A Networking Blueprint
First, you must understand the goals of networking. This business method is not for people to meet each other and then go separate ways. Approach networking with the same mentality that you approach work and consider what you need to achieve the personal or professional results you want from each interaction. Do you require strategic, personal or operational networking? You should not network for the sake of networking. Instead, you should look to create connections for a specific reason such as finding a job or a mentor.
Start by connecting with people who you know personally and then branch out to those who have accomplished meaningful things in the fields or areas you are interested in. For example, you can start with a LinkedIn message to a friend asking them to connect you to someone in their network. Follow this up with personalized in-person or virtual interactions at a meetup or conference. This will allow you to speak and interact with more like-minded individuals who can provide the insights or guidance you seek.
Once you are regularly meeting new people and establishing connections, be mindful of where you are concentrating your efforts. There is no reason you must stick to networking with people who work in a single industry. Your next eureka moment or big break can come from a totally new industry or creative pursuit. You just have to be able to see the opportunity for what it is. Connections made today can transpire into meaningful advancements far into the future, so savor each connection and build on them.
The Importance of Networking
Networking is not just for beginners. No matter where you are in your career, you can benefit from the guidance, help or recommendations of others in your field. This can even include other successful professionals and contacts in other fields.
If you do not network, finding your next big break or continuing to succeed in your current role can be a bit harder. With the right networks, you can gain insight into the new directions that your industry is taking and learn how to stay relevant as needs evolve. Networking also makes it easier to identify the groups or individuals who can support you along the way. This is especially important when embarking on a new project or delving into a new line of work.
One of the differentiating factors between leaders and managers is a leader’s ability to determine what needs to be done and how to build the teams and processes to achieve shared goals. As you progress in your career and take on leadership roles with more responsibilities, you will require the assistance of more people in wider networks to succeed. Laying the foundations of collaboration and cooperation in the different areas of your work will help you and other stakeholders achieve success.
Networking Is Give and Take
Finally, don’t forget that networking goes both ways. You may seek the help or guidance from others, but you may also find your peers coming to you for mentorship or insight. Be prepared to offer a hand to those who may be trying to enter your industry or advance their career.
About University of Phoenix
University of Phoenix is committed to providing working adults with the knowledge and training they need to succeed in an ever-changing workplace. The University has more than a million graduates and offers a diverse range of courses, degree programs and certificates for learners from all backgrounds.
Whether you are a first-time college student or an experienced professional returning to school, University of Phoenix can help you enhance your career and pursue your personal goals. With flexible class scheduling, course credit for workplace experience and rich career guidance and mentorship resources, the University works to improve student lives and strengthen communities through the innovation and dedication of experienced faculty and dedicated departmental teams.
The University’s curriculum integrates academic theory, lifelong learning and professional practice. All courses are designed to support the needs of adult learners. University of Phoenix strives to help students develop relevant skills, including networking, that can be easily applied to their current work and life experiences.
Learn more about University of Phoenix programs and offerings by visiting https://www.phoenix.edu/blog.