Department: Work Placement, Employability and Careers
Title: Networking: all you need to know
In this second Blog we will take you through what networking is, why it is important and various tool and approaches to establishing a network
What is networking?
Networking is a professional skill that can be learned and developed. It means establishing and nurturing mutually beneficial relationships with the people you meet. It is believed that the people who are well connected are more successful. Networking can help you develop your skill set, stay on top of the latest trends in the industry you are interested in, and gain the necessary insights to advance your career.
Last blog we talked about your CV and that highlighting your Career Development is the lifelong evolution of your career. It goes without saying that networking is incredibly important during a job search. The right employee referral can increase your chances of landing a job, and, if you're looking to make a career change, your network can support you by helping you find connections in your industry or an industry you are trying to break into.
We suggest you take the time to build meaningful relationships with those in your professional circle, so when the time comes to search for work, you can tap into those valuable connections for referrals, insights into job leads, and other valuable information.
The benefits of networking include:
Exchange of ideas and information
Getting career advice
Make you more visible
Open doors to new, exciting opportunities
Get you promoted.
Join a networking group
There are many global and national networking groups and more information about these can be found here: WORK IT DAILY.
But you don’t need to go so big to start with, many towns and cities have a Chamber of Commerce and in many areas, there are also smaller local networking groups to support people who are starting or have their own businesses.
Emma Payne started her own business, Juno Financial Services 10 months ago. Below Emma explains how networking was essential in getting her business off the ground.
Here is a quote from Emma about the networking platform LinkedIn®:
“A great tool for networking is the social network LinkedIn. It is a professional network where you can search for work opportunities, colleagues, partners, clients.” (Emma Payne: www.junofs.co.uk)
Do you have a LinkedIn® account?
What exactly is LinkedIn?
LinkedIn is the most powerful employment-oriented social networking platform. Having a LinkedIn account or profile can really boost employability. If you haven’t heard about it yet, or you already have your own account, but you’re not sure about how to make the most of it, let us explain to you the main reasons why we firmly believe that you should have a LinkedIn account and try to make the most of it and its professional opportunities.
The ‘Social Network’ of LinkedIn?
With more than 660 million members, LinkedIn welcomes both job seekers and recruiters. It’s the perfect place to brand yourself. Regardless of you being a student, a job seeker, or an employee, LinkedIn gives you the opportunity to build your professional identity, highlight your skills and be the boss of your online reputation as a worker, just managing your data and remaining coherent and consistent with the information that you want your potential employer to know about you.
The job market and careers are constantly changing with more people becoming self-employed, self-starters or freelancers; this means there are many people in similar positions and shared interests. By using LinkedIn to highlight your knowledge, skills, your education and career information, this site acts like an interactive window to who you are as a professional, what your skills set is and the type of industry you are affiliated to. You can also upload your CV and express your interest in certain roles that match your knowledge and skills set. As a social networking platform, LinkedIn perfectly mirrors reality of the current local, national and global workforce.
Once you complete your studies you will become one of our precious Alumni. Alumni is a plural noun for a group of students who have graduated from the same College or University. So, when you graduate with us you will, have automatically have a network of likeminded people who studied the same course as you. We have a listed group on LinkedIn for our alumni students. Click here to view it.
As a team interested in your future employability; whether you are wanting to start up your own business or are seeking new employment opportunities, we certainly agree that being part of a networking group will enhance your professional exposure. Next time, in Blog 3 we will be discussing entrepreneurship and skills to help promote your business.
With special thanks to Emma Payne, Juno Financial Services for her insights on networking: www.junofs.co.uk