Wednesday, February 10, 2016
Consider the following four strategies when you approach networking and building a supportive community around you.
1. Build an advisory team. Instead of having one mentor consider identifying several individuals who can serve as both mentors and adviser on various issues you face in your life and career. This advisory team might include a local business person, a former college professor, former supervisor, or a trusted person at your church or place of worship.
2. Attend an annual conference. Get into the practice of attending the same conference every year and you will begin to develop positive relationships, friendships, and a strong network of people in your profession.
3. Join a local group. If you're a dad join up with a local dad's group, or if you're a mom seek out the nearby mom's club. If you're into tech there is likely a meetup of tech-minded people in your community. Seek out a group of interest and start attending regular gatherings, even if the group's focus is not directly related to your career.
4. Be active on social media. Particularly if you are shy, social media platforms, such as LinkedIn, can be a great place to connect with interesting people with similar interests and goals without the pressure of an initial face-to-face meeting. You can develop a familiarity with people on these platforms in order to make that in-person meeting more comfortable when you do meet at that annual conference your attending.
Implementing these four strategies will help you develop an effective and supportive network.