How-to Network With Professionals in Your Industry
Although networking might not seem like an exciting thing to do, it’s an important part of business. Meeting other professionals in your industry is a great way to make connections that can ultimately lead to professional growth. It’s also a good way to access industry resources and make sure you’re headed in the right direction. When most people think of networking, they imagine being in a room full of strangers, engaging in boring conversations and exchanging business cards. Fortunately, that doesn’t have to be the case.
Networking can be an enjoyable experience because it can give you a chance to meet interesting people and have conversations that are beneficial. There are things that you can do to cultivate a positive experience when networking in just about any situation. Let’s delve into ways in which you can make networking in your industry more enjoyable and effective.
When you attend a networking event, your mindset should be focused on learning about the people in attendance by asking genuine questions about them and their business. Most people enjoy talking about themselves and are willing to answer your questions if you are truly interested. You can start the conversation by gathering basic information, such as their name, company and position.
Once you’ve broken the ice, you can ask more detailed questions about how business is going and whether there is any way in which you can help them. By demonstrating a desire to be of assistance in some small way, there’s a good chance of developing a professional relationship that’s enduring and mutually beneficial. Before parting ways, remember to get a business card and express a desire to stay in touch.
Use Social Media
It’s amazing how much of an impact social media has had on business in recent years. In fact, you have a better chance of connecting with people in your industry through social media than at an actual networking event. Social media platforms like LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook can be used to find out who’s in your industry and more easily initiate a conversation.
If you attend an industry conference and you meet a lot of people, social media makes it easier to make a connection after the event. Another way to connect with people is by sharing content that’s relevant to your industry. It’s a great way to garner a lot of attention, and likely a lot of followers because you can position yourself as an authority. Once this happens, you’re more likely to have others in your industry reaching out to you. The more connected you are on social media, the greater your chances of success.