- Arrive at an event:
- Eat some nice canapes
- Pilfer free wine
We then chat to a mix of interesting, and most definitely not interesting, people, then we go home, and nothing ever changes.
In your career (and life) interacting with other humans is a core part of our existence, and indeed our success, whether face to face, a video call or through social media.
So, when it comes to pro-actively meeting people (which is all networking is), remember:
- Why you are doing it?
Are you looking to:
- Find a new job?
- Get promoted?
- Change industries?
- Learn a new skill?
Whilst free nibbles or a decent coffee with someday you meet are “nice”, they will not help you land your dream job.
- “Why did I sign up to this random Zoom meet up?”
- “What would be a great outcome from this meeting?”
- “What do I need to do to increase my chances of that outcome?”
This will increase the chances of you getting what you want and need from a networking interaction.
- Keep doing it. Consistency is King & Queen!
Many of us will have sent a LinkedIn connection request in the last year. Maybe you even attended a face-to-face event where you got to meet people.
Some of your messages will be ignored, and some of these events will feel like a waste a time.
What makes the biggest difference to the success of networking is consistency.
It is not about dwelling on one message you sent three weeks ago or one event you attended 6 months ago.
Reaching out to 15 relevant people will nearly always trump a 4-hour crafted message to one person.
- It’s about not you, it’s about ME! A quick way to be forgotten!
When you first network with somebody, whether it is to learn about a new job, an alternative career path or a promotion opportunity, remember you are forming a relationship.
Good relationships have a balance and are not only about one person. You want the other person to like and remember you.
So I recommend always asking:
“Let me know how I could help you?”
You could share some market intel, make an intro to one of your connections, or just listen properly to what they are saying.
Next time you are networking in person; awkwardly juggling a canape with a large glass of free vino trying to shake hands with the over eager stranger going for a “knuckle crunching “POWER” handshake, remember:
- What do I want to gain from this?
- I will speak with other many other people tonight
- This person could be my future boss. How can I help them now?
With 10+ years experience as a corporate recruiter and headhunter, Jon has experience networking with 1,000’s of people.
If you would like to learn about implementing an effective networking strategy or feel you need expert support with your job search, you can contact Jon here: Book a call with Jon