Breaking The Myths of Networking
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Everyone knows the benefits networking can potentially bring in.
A job recommendation here and a personal reference there…
This is probably the main reason why networking sessions are so well-received and often bursting at the seams.
This is especially true when it was made known early that representatives from brand name companies will be present.
With vertical networking, there an explicit emphasis placed upon getting to know people who have journeyed further into the field, meaning your network is targeted.
Many will add to this group former employees that still retain a reasonable amount of clout at their previous workplace.
This is fine and dandy, except for one problem…
Every job aspirant will probably be thinking the same thing as well — and many of them probably have at least equal, if not better paper qualifications than you do.
This being the case, here are 2 things which I would recommend (and have been getting reasonable success) as a graduating job seeker myself…
Change Your Lifestyle
Networking is a lifestyle.
This goes beyond what takes place at job conventions and career fairs as it can happen anywhere.
Amongst relatives, friends, colleagues, during interviews, when performing transactions of any nature, anywhere, anywhere at all.
Surprisingly, this is something that many job seekers overlook or shun for fear that broaching the subject might make one look like a fair weather friend.
My answer to this is ‘no’ because there is always the prospect of reciprocity in the future.
Remember, you are also part of somebody else’s network.
You’d never know how things will turn out in the future in this fluid, ever-changing corporate landscape, which brings me to my next point.
It is a fallacy to assume that vertical networking is sufficient.
Horizontal networks matter as well.
The assumption made when one does not engage as much in horizontal networking is this:
the speed which everyone climbs the corporate ladder is the same.
As I mentioned previously, this is not the case given that everyone sports a different CV, has a different personality with different corporate interests.
Apart from possibly providing job referrals or functioning as character referees, horizontal networks are an important means by which the job seeker can learn more about industry changes, best practices and even the latest insider corporate titbits.
The fact that your horizontal networks tend to be viewed as peers rather than superiors makes conversation all the more easier too.
You’d never know when or how an opportunity can turn up. Unlike the events organized specifically for networking, one does not have to “attend” any function to network horizontally.
As I shared, living the networking lifestyle means that this can take place with anyone, at any place and at any time.
What Are Your Thoughts??
✔ What other points can you provide to Shi’s points here??
✔ Shi makes a very good point — you never know when one of your contacts will develop into something better for both you and your contact. It really doesn’t take much, some have mastered the art of gaining a contact in less than a minute. If that were the case for you, what would you do next?
✔ Networking doesn’t have to be treacherous nor difficult, the idea is to have some fun in meeting people. What are your suggestions?
Please share your thoughts with our audience in the comments section below!
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