Three things to NEVER do while networking
Creating relationships is vital as you move into the professional world, but networking can be a bit intimidating at the beginning. It’s hard to know where to start, who to talk to, or even what to say.
Whatever’s holding you back, Take a look at these three things you should NEVER do while networking. Sometimes knowing what not to do makes all the difference in taking the first step.
Don’t ask about a job or internship.
Networking is about more than getting a job or internship, it is about building relationships. Aside from professional opportunities, you can gain knowledge on career paths, job environments, and an anecdotal take on professions.
Start your conversation by getting to know the person, learn their background and how they got where they are. Ask questions about their work and get insight into some of the day-to-day operations. You want to spend time building rapport.
After getting to know them a bit, ask for advice. Figure out what they would do differently or what they wish they’d known if they were in your shoes. Inquire about additional resources you should be checking out or other people who would be willing to provide more information.
Don’t only reach out when you need help.
Make sure that you are building the relationship even after your initial connection. Follow up with the person and build a genuine relationship; you want to interact more than when you just need help.
Update them on how you used their advice or if you gained a new opportunity. Create a relationship that isn’t one-sided and keep up on it. You will gain more from long lasting connections than one-time interactions.
Once you’ve maintained a relationship, don’t stop there, try to continue growing your network with others.
Don’t wait to network.
As you have learned from the previous two tips, networking is more than just getting a job or getting help, it is a relationship. And relationships take time to create. Don’t wait until you need a job or internship to start building your network.
Don’t be afraid to reach out to people who are successful in a career that you are interested in. As you move forward in your professional development, spend time learning as much as you can about the workforce. Explore areas you may not have thought of before, talk to people about their careers and how they got there. You never know what connections you will build and how they will affect your future.
As you begin to build your network, be patient. These things take time and can be difficult when you first start, but as you practice, networking will become easier.
Be sure to check out LAS Connect to start your networking relationships. Follow these easy steps to get set up in LAS Connect today!
1.) Visit https://lasconnect.org/ and click the “Get Started” button located on the bottom of the screen (you may have to first click to “accept cookies” at the top of the screen)
2.) Register for LAS Connect through your preferred method (LinkedIn, Google, Facebook or Email)
Blog by Kerrigan Urbi – LAS Career Services Student Communications Specialist