Professional networking is so much more than making friends from the same job sector as yours. While networking does mean to build relationships, the kind that you make is also important. It is all about meeting and building relations with like minded people that have a mutually-beneficial connection with people in your industry. Most relations are give and take, and professional relations are no exception. In this case, favors are given and taken.
It is important to have a strong and wide network. Networking gives you an insight to new trends in the sector, any new job openings or any new projects in the market. Social media and professional platforms have made the passing of information much easier, and presents an opportunity to connect with international representatives of companies and expands your network outside of your country.
This is important for any position, networking is as imperative for a new recruit as it is for a founder or a CEO. This includes CEO’s with decades worth of experience and for new CEOs.
There are a lot of benefits of networking, other than just finding people in the same sectors as you.
- Makes you noticeable:
The more people you know, the further you reach is. Publicity is good for businesses, people notice others based on their skills and capabilities, and their relevance to the industry. The more people you know, the more you can stand out in terms of expertise and experience. Professionals only connect with other professionals that they know are adept and great at their job. Garnering a starting network also attracts clients, as they know the type of people you connect with.
- Improves your intellect:
When you connect with different people, you learn their thought process, how they work and what factors help make them a success. Once you learn these things, you can then tweak them to suit how you conduct business. This will help increase your chances of success, help harness your skills, improve thinking and expand your thought process. Which in turn fosters your career growth and professional prospects.
- Growth in status:
Career growth is a long-term process that you will need to do for the better part of your career or even after. There are two things that come with a top position – need for a strong network and status – for you to stay at the top. Your contact largely depends on your status and vice versa. Which helps get you better opportunities.
- Find out new opinions:
Chatting or conversing with like-minded people opens up a world of new things that you probably didn’t know existed, professionally or generally. Sometimes networking is not all about what I can do for you and what you can do for me. It is connecting with people at the same wavelength as you and learning from each other. With these people you can ask for help, advice, opinions or tips.
- Professional circle:
Every relationship is a two-way street, you give as much as you take. You give a favour with the expectation that when you call for it, the other person will do the same in return. This leads us to trust, which is important in any relationship. So connect with people who you know, like and whose ethics are strong, someone you can trust to help.
- Knowledge is power:
Information is a type of currency, a payment for services rendered. This information can range from projects to job openings to workings of a company. The one who holds knowledge, holds power. And when you have power, there will be many who will want to connect and network with you.
The next question is, how do I do it in a way that maximizes my value and contacts. There are many things that you can do to garner a strong network. Keep in mind that these need to be done diligently and regularly to be of any use.
- Reach out:
Build relations with the right people – people that can help you make the right moves in your career. Colleagues, contemporaries, bosses, friends from university, alumni, etc.
- Keep in contact:
Regularly connect with these people. Send an email to check in, forward an article about things that they like or are in their orbit. The stronger the relationship, the more effort they will put in to help you. Just don’t keep things professional, add in a bit of personal touch to make them feel special. Make an effort and put in the time.
- Move online:
Networking within the company is only going to get you so much. Branch out of your company and expand overseas. Look out for your counterparts from different companies and connect.
- Do and take favours:
Maintain a balance in what you ask for and what you give. No one wants someone who only takes and takes and gives nothing in return. And just giving is not going to benefit you in any way, you need to be able to call in favours when you need it.
- Attend professional networking events:
Indian Startups knows how important networking is for professional growth, we host monthly networking events for professionals and startups and have received an immense amount of positive feedback. After many sessions, many meetings and discussion, we have decided to expand our networking events and include CEOs and CXOs. Now we would love to introduce – CEO Networking Event. A networking event exclusively for CEOs from all industries and sectors, old and new. And CXO Networking Event for all Chief Officers of companies and firms.
We can’t wait to see you in our networking events! Feel free to reach out to us for any issue or information and we will get in touch with you.