Tips and Tools for Becoming a Networking Pro
You’ve probably heard that networking is the best way to find your next job. But how do you actually get started? Networking is equal parts art and science. Some people have to work harder at the different aspects of it. Someone who is especially skilled at relationship building, such as a sales professional, may not focus as well on getting only the best contacts while someone who prefers a behind the scenes role may not be able to strike up a conversation as fluidly.
For finance professionals good, targeted networking means joining trade and industry groups in your area. Monster.com put together this nearly comprehensive list of trade organizations that you can use to plan your networking strategy.
Knowing who to talk to is only the first step. You also need to cultivate the skills that allow you to successfully approach and communicate with someone who can become a good connection. Here are a few ways you should approach networking in the finance field.
- Contact your university alumni group.
- Network even when you’re not in the job market.
- Keep the focus on them rather than your job search.
- Don’t talk only about finance and make a personal connection.
- Make corrections as you begin to see what works and what doesn’t.
- Be a connector and find ways to introduce new connections to old ones.
Good networking skills increase with practice. Get out and meet with people as often as you can. Bring your business cards with you wherever you go. Even at non-industry related events you never know who you’re going to meet.
After you’ve connected with someone be sure to follow up with them. When you give them your card, be sure to get one in return. The next day, send a quick email recapping your conversation and offer another way to help one another. This will open up a line of communication. Remember; don’t always focus on what a connection can do for you. Be helpful and offer ways you can help them as well.
Do you want to know more about networking? VincentBenjamin can offer more tips and tricks so contact us today!