We all agree growing the network is need of the hour these days.
But growing your network is not limited to traditional venues and events.
Why won’t it be, networking is about making connections and building enduring, mutually beneficial relationships.
Don’t you agree?
The word networking is a commonly used word in these days. But other than networking we use words like formal and informal networks.
Have you given a thought to what are exactly formal and informal networks?
Chantal van Kempen in one of her post says the network is a connection between resources with the same purpose that interacts formally and informally, exchanging valuable knowledge that can be beneficial for those engaged. She also says formal networks can be bounded by rules and contracts that structure the network whereas Informal networks are less rigid than the previous and don’t always have strong ties or contracts imposed. The informal network allows its members to move in any direction, skip authorities, and is more socially structured.
But these are the definitions.
For me even a sweet introduction of ‘Hello’ to someone new shifted to your floor is also considered as networking as it is all about relationship building.
For me, informal networking is all about the most meaningful connections, against all logic, that has developed outside of our professional networking opportunities.
Do you agree?
One may never know how a connection may provide you a help in some way or the other or you could help out or offer someone you know.
Like, for example,
Andrea Sachs in the Movie Devil Wears Prada meets Christian Thompson at James Holt’s party, but it is that short casual conversation which helps Andrea later to accomplished Miranda’s “impossible” task, thus saving her job.
That’s one of the reasons why one must be part of growing networks.
The month of December comes with a relaxed office environment due to slow business, it is the most wonderful time of the year for other fun activities. With a lot of parties to attend one receives ample opportunity to meet and greet people.
You also can be the host getting set of new opportunities to network and build relationships.
Networking has proved to be infinitely more effective than traditional job searches methods such as online job postings. As many of the job openings get filled internally via connections and not by online job posting.
Other than job seekers even entrepreneurs can use the opportunities to network with people and build new or further develop old relationships.
One can use the opportunity to make key connections at the companies you’re most interested in.
But just having fun in the parties will not help one network.
One must be thoughtful of the strategies they use to network.
Firstly, one must always remember never to fake it, in order to make it. It’s always important to be yourself.
Secondly, don’t forget to carry your Business cards. You may say how can one not. Trust me I have met few have forgotten.
If you are not getting accustomed well of networking, prepare yourself beforehand like keeping some questions in mind to help you get the conversation going along. Like for example introducing you to an executive can be an intimidating experience, so give yourself a pep talk before the party.
The conversations should be focused on the person you’re speaking with, not you and your job search. As this is not the time to brag about yourself nor is it apt to bring in your resume in play or ask for favors.
When building relationships, which is what networking is all about, you want to get to know people on a professional, as well as personal a level. This is the time to take advantage of the holidays to relax and socialize and get to know people a little better.
When it comes to me. I not only use such opportunity to introduce myself, but also to gain knowledge and wisdom from others. When I meet people I listen at least as much as possible it helps you connect with the person as well as gain from their experiences.
As we say ‘knowledge gained is never wasted.’
Since you intend to network with the invitees, remember it’s fine to have a good time, but you don’t need to be the life of the party. Act like a professional at all times. The simple reason being you don’t want to smell of liquor or be too relaxed when you approach the person you want to connect with.
But when trying to be too uptight will not work as well, it is required to maintain the balance by honoring the event as you don’t want to be a turn off.
With a little common sense and a bit of perseverance, you can make this holiday season a memorable one when it comes to advancing your career or getting new Clients as well as grow or root your current relations further.
Provided you, network the right way, and you just may set yourself up for success in the coming year!
Have you previously harvested the benefits of networking during the holiday season? Who knows sharing your experiences may help others.
Share your views in the comment section below.
I help business owners Build their Brands and make them irresistible, profitable & simple to run.
I want to help you build your social media and it's marketing, business growth and digital strategy with confidence, so they're not just successful, but authentic as well as reliable.
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Other than work I'm someone, who love's 2 enjoy life, I love to keep things sweet n simple just like me!!!
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