How to network your way to the top

Image: Getty Images
Image: Getty Images

The more you interact with others to exchange information and develop professional or social contacts is the more people will remember you and what you stand for.

Establishing relationships with people can help you progress in your career in many ways. If you’re looking to advance, then networking is for you. According to Huffingtonpost, you need to have a strategy when attending events. Make it work for you. Be intentional about what you want to get out of the event or networking session.

Networking should not be going out to collect business cards and to be seen. It’s important that you approach networking as you would your work: set a goal for yourself and find an opportunity that meets that target.

Here are quick tips:

Have an icebreaker:

It can be difficult to walk up to a stranger and start a conversation, no matter how confident you are. But having an opening line ready to generate conversation is crucial. Try a simple question like: “What brings you to this event?”

Be open about your career goals:

Often times, we don’t want to come off as pushy or insincere, so we tiptoe around our goals when networking. It’s important to speak up about your ambitions, and be clear about what you plan to get there.

Follow up:

If you had a great conversation and exchanged contacts, send that person a note and remark on your interaction. Mention something you specifically enjoyed during your discussion. And if you offered to connect them with someone else, follow through. Networking isn’t over when you leave the event.

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