According to author, Andrew Hennigan, “Networking is a deliberate activity to build, reinforce and maintain relationships of trust with other people to further your goals. Professional networking is simply networking focused on professional goals.”
Usually, many people get confused and bit of overwhelmed with professional networking as many links it with sales process like prospecting or cold calling to find new leads. Do you get overwhelmed when you are asked to go to a networking event? How comfortable do you feel? It can be bit overwhelming to go to an event and forcing yourself to get out of your comfort zone and introducing yourself to others that you perhaps would have never met.
However, people trust and prefer to associate or work with people they know already either directly or through another trusted person. In those instances, gaining trust with new people is much easier when you have a stronger network and wider window of opportunity opens. In other words, building network by getting to know more people, building trust with them and telling them what you are looking for.
According to Investopedia, “Professional networking platforms such as LinkedIn provide
an online location for people to engage with other professionals, join groups, post blogs, and share information. And, of course, they provide a place to post a resume that can be seen by prospective employers, to search for jobs, or to identify job candidates. These days, a business-to-business customer pipeline can be developed almost entirely using a social networking site. Online networking forum allows professionals to demonstrate their knowledge and connect with like-minded people.”
At the present time, I do have a LinkedIn account as I believe that is a great source for networking in an online platform. In this era with advancement of technology, it has become much easier to network digitally and connect with people of similar interest. However, I am not saying that one should not go to a networking event, but these events don’t happen every day and perhaps it is easier to connect and network with others digitally from the comfort of your space. I would say that I am more of a passive user on LinkedIn and my goal for next few months would be to get active, start a new blog and post updates often on that platform. I plan on increasing my engagement on LinkedIn and following some more groups and participating actively so I am seen more on that platform. I am not looking for a career change or a new job at moment but perhaps would like to have my goal as more engagement and building my network of similar minded professionals. I also plan on increasing my visibility and engagement on Instagram and Twitter. I believe those channels can be of a great advantage for finding like-minded individuals that I could network and establish professional connections. The search can be done on through #hashtags. I will be doing some postings on these platforms and will use #hashtags. However, my focus for next 6-12 months will be on working and improving my engagement on LinkedIn.
Are you on LinkedIn? Let’s get connected! See you there 🙂