There are not many people that enjoy searching for employment. It’s difficult to put yourself out there, especially your best self, only to be rejected again and again. An important skill to develop is the ability to network. Networking is the century-old adage of “it’s not what you know, but who you know.” There are lots of ways to go about networking. Here are a few tips to increase your circle of influence.
- Know Your Goals: What do you hope to accomplish by networking? Is there an industry you want to be a part of?
- Volunteer: If you want to get to know an industry or company, there are few better ways than volunteering. It is much easier to get to know people when you are doing unpaid work for them. This works well for networking as well as life in general.
- Get to Know Everyone: Networking is not only about helping you achieve your short-term goals. You never know what connections will be beneficial in 10 or 20 years. Make connections with as many people as possible.
- Be Altruistic: It’s easy to focus on what you want to get out of networking. Remember that you are building connections with other humans who likely also have goals and aspirations. Don’t assume you need to gain something out of every connection.