By Michael Dehoyos
It doesn’t matter what industry of the business world you’re in or what job you’re working – you’ll always hear about how important networking is. We’ve all been to the meetings: standing around making small talk, taking a few too many snacks when people aren’t looking and trying to look enthusiastic throughout.
“Is there actually any benefit to going in the first place?” That’s what I used to ask myself.
However, when you consider the saying “It’s not what you know, it’s who you know”, networking starts to seem a little more important. In fact, as I’ve worked through the years, it’s become one of my most important parts of working and I can’t understate the impact it’s had on my job. Allow me to explain.
Networking is About Creating Relationships
When I was starting out with my networking meetings, it was fun for a while but I quickly became full of dread whenever they came up. What’s the point?
The truth is, when it comes to relationships, it’s all about investing time. You get out what you put in. The more time you invest, the greater and stronger the relationship. The stronger a relationship, the more opportunities you’ll discover.
Think of it this way: you go to a networking meeting and meet a guy. He’s great, works for a similar company and you get on well. You swap contact details and stay in touch. A few weeks later, he says his company is looking for a person that does what you do and asks if you would be interested.
You say yes and offer your freelance services. His company is happy and your company is happy. A few months later, he tells you about a job opportunity in his company and thinks you might be the perfect fit for it. It’s the next step up on the career ladder for you, so you take it and begin the next chapter of your career.
Without knowing this guy from the original networking meeting, none of these opportunities would have come your way. The direction any networked relationship could take is practically limitless.
Building Relationships for Any and All Purposes
Through networking, you’re allowing yourself the opportunity to meet people from all walks of life. “You could meet mentors, friends, potential business partners, and new clients. You can meet people who will help develop the skills you already have and help you to learn new ones. You’ll keep up to date with the latest news and insights from your business and the trends, and you’ll stay in touch with what job opportunities are out there,” explains Sarah Turner, a business writer at 1Day2Write and Write My X.
It doesn’t matter what stage of your career you’re at or where you’re heading; networking is a great way to keep your options open and to stay in touch with what’s available.
Make Networking Work for You
It’s important to remember that there’s not just one type of networking. Standing around in a meeting room (or Zoom during a health pandemic!) with a load of strangers might not appeal to you, but that’s not the only type of networking there is.
“There are one-to-one networking meetings where you can meet an individual and sit and chat over coffee, or at least networking meetings that keep the group size below ten people; ideal if you’re a shy person. There are also meetings with huge numbers of people if that’s more your style,” shares Ben Harper, a career writer at Britstudent and NextCoursework.
When it comes to networking, it’s all about finding what works for you and then investing your time there. There’s no point in attending meetings you hate for the sake of it.
Michael Dehoyos is a marketer, writer, and editor at Thesis Writing Service and Research Paper Writing Services. He helps people and businesses create their own personal brands and helps educate people with business opportunities they might not know exists. Also, he is a writer at Origin Writings.