Networking events have become ubiquitous with the job search. Anyone who gives you advice on how to find your next job is sure to encourage you to attend networking events in your industry to meet new people who could potentially help you find a job. There are some ways you can leverage your next networking event to benefit as much as possible. Here are five tips to help you successfully navigate your next industry meet and greet.
- Use the business cards you’ve collected. It is easy to file away all of the contact names you’ve collected as you’ve shaken hands and exchanged business cards. Instead, you should spend the next day going through the cards you’ve received and reach out to your new connections. Briefly remind them who you are and why you want to connect to them.
- Be valuable. Once you’ve connected with the individuals you met at the event, you need to show them value. Building a relationship is more important than asking for a job. Occasionally reach out to the new contact by sharing articles or websites that you think they will find helpful. When you are on their mind they are likely to call you when that job opportunity opens up.
- Create a web. Networking is not meant to be an individual sport. As you continue to meet people through events you will begin to see how multiple connections can be formed. Link people together any time you can. This can happen at the event in person or through email.
- Utilize technology. LinkedIn is the top website for networking. While their system offers a form email for connections, be sure to personalize it. There are also applications available on most smart phones which make connecting easy and allow you to take notes about people you have met.
- Always plan one step ahead. Networking is a skill and practice makes perfect. Always think about your next networking event and how to improve your connections there. Always consider what you did well and what you can do better next time. Commit to attending at least one networking event a month.
Leveraging your new network will help you discover new pathways to potential opportunities. One way to expand your network is to work with a recruiter who specializes in your industry. Contact CompliStaff to see how they can help you connect to their network.