How to network and socialise for success
Making contacts is all about the right approach and timing
A strong professional network is known to open doors to incredible career opportunities. Yes, it can be a little time-consuming and sometimes awkward at occasions, but socialising with the right people goes a long way in giving you a competitive edge over your peers.
What kind of a networker are you?
Figure out what kind of networking works best with you. For instance, if you are uncomfortable in large groups, socialising over one-on-one coffee might work the best for you. Once you’ve understood your style, it will become easier to approach the right kind of people to build your network.
1. Start at home
It is best to start socialising with people you know already. These could be people in the university, at your hostel or even at library you go to with whom you can seek creating meaningful friendships.
Simple tip: If it seems difficult to approach people, try to introduce yourself to your classmate sitting beside you to get a head start. Once it works, move around in the classroom and rotate your seat to meet more peers.
2. Keep interacting with your professors
The faculty at any institution is experienced and already has many industry connections. Keep interacting with them to know if there are any networking events happening in and around the campus. They can also help you update you about various internship or job opportunities available for students in the area.
3. Become a member of clubs and communities
Become an active participant in a student club or community of choice. This will help meet new people of similar tastes as well enhance your organisational and leadership skills as well.
4. Networking events work great
Keep checking the notice boards and bulletins for any upcoming networking events or seminars as these are amazing people to meet potential employers and valuable industry connections. Walk up and introduce yourself to people, exchange contact details and keep in touch later.
5. Social media rocks
Make use of networking sites such as LinkedIn and Twitter to meet professionals of your industry. Be proactive and engage in conversations with organisations and other industry leaders who share ongoing trends and updates of interest.
6. Alumni connect
Reach out to your university’s alumni and connect with them. They can help you understand the challenges they went through and offer you some practical advice on life after studies.