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How Networking Can Help You Find More Success in Your Job Search and Career

How Networking Can Help You Find More Success in Your Job Search and Career

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By Julianne Brown
Career Coach, APUS

Professional networking can be key to your job search and career success. While networking may be highly underrated by some people, a recent survey by employment expert Lou Adler’s company, The Adler Group, shows that around 85% of critical jobs are filled via networking.

Networking will help you gain access to job opportunities that you never knew existed. In addition, networking gives you the opportunity to stand out from other job seekers.

Here are some tips to ensure your networking is successful:

1. Be proactive. To make the most of your networking, actively engage in meeting people and making yourself known. Introducing yourself at business meetings, conferences and industry expos is a great way to connect with people in your field.

2. Think outside the box. Who says business environments are the only place to connect? Practice your networking skills with people in social environments, such as the gym, the park, sporting events or even school functions.

No matter where you are, you never know who you might meet. Talking with other people is always a great way to practice your communication skills.

3. Have a great elevator pitch. When you are in a professional environment, be sure you are ready for whatever comes your way. In many instances, professional environments create professional conversations and you want to be ready to market yourself.

An elevator pitch is a 30-second speech that gives listeners an idea of who you are, what you do and why they should be interested in you. Have this speech ready for any encounter – you never know who you will stumble across.

4. Have a face on social media. With social media being so prevalent in our society, staying active on social media sites is crucial to your networking techniques. Try to share one or two professional articles on LinkedIn each day or comment on your connections’ achievements. This practice ensures that you are staying active and that you remain fresh in the minds of people in your professional networks.

5. Opportunities await. Any time an opportunity presents itself, take it. You never know if that opportunity will present itself again and you don’t want to regret not taking advantage of it. Opportunities are a great way to get yourself out there and to start conversations with people.

Never be afraid of an opportunity, because you will always learn from the experience. You could also be connecting with your future employer. There is no limit to opportunities as there are constantly arising. Volunteer work is a great opportunity to network and opportunities are always out there.

Get more information on industry-specific volunteer work

Networking skills are crucial to your professional career and job search. Meeting new people through networking will open up your window of opportunities.

If nothing else, networking is a great learning experience. It is a process that requires patience, but the wait will be worth it once you begin experiencing new things and landing the job of your dreams.

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