5 Networking Ideas To Give Your Professional Career A Kickstart in 2020
There’s no doubt that networking is a great
way to fast track your career. When you network, you increase the likelihood of
being hired and receiving promotions. However, finding appropriate networking
opportunities isn’t always as straightforward as it seems. If you attempt to
network in the wrong way or in the wrong place, the repercussions could move
your career backward instead of forward. Here are five networking ideas to give
your professional career a kickstart in 2020.
1. Feel More Comfortable
If you’re uncomfortable at networking events,
you may avoid attending in the first place. Learn to feel more comfortable by
adjusting how you think about networking. Networking has a long history. From
the very beginning of commerce, people have wanted to be in business with
others that they know and trust. If they didn’t know someone personally, that
person would offer a reference — a name that was familiar to both of them.
That’s networking in its purest form. Essentially, networking is just a meet
and greet where people congregate to find things in common with other
career-minded people. Hopefully, this will make you feel more comfortable about
the whole networking process.
2. Choose Appropriate Networking
The next order of business is to make a list
of good networking venues. You can find local events specifically dedicated to
networking in your city event calendar and on sites such as Meetup.com. You’ll
also want to leverage your own private memberships. For example, if you belong
club and golf in Brooksville, you can use your visits to network
with fellow members.
3. Listen and Learn
One of the most common mistakes that
inexperienced networkers make is to talk too much about their own projects. A
successful networker understands that others are more impressed if you can demonstrate
that you are a good listener. Strive to listen more than you speak.
You’ll learn more that way and you’ll make a better impression on fellow
4. Follow Through on Promises
It’s no use making new connections unless you
follow through on your promises to them. When you meet new people at the
networking event, you’ll probably tell them that you’ll get in touch at some
point in the future. Make sure that you do so. As soon as you get back home,
organize all the business cards you’ve collected. Enter dates into your calendar
so you can be sure to get back to your new contacts in a timely manner.
Following through on your promises is an integral part of proper networking
etiquette. It will show people that you are reliable and dependable.
5. Host Your Own Networking Event
Another great way to give your professional
career a kickstart in 2020 is to host your own networking event. Doing so will
establish you as a leader rather than a follower. To host your own networking
event, determine the theme and size of the event. Once you’ve decided on a
theme, rent out a venue and send out invitations. The beauty of this idea is
that you can invite attendees you haven’t personally met yet, which will
increase your own networking circle.
These five networking ideas will give your
professional career a kickstart in 2020. Remember, the first step is to make
the decision to attend more networking events. Once you do that, the rest will
fall into place.