Are you making these networking mistakes?

Are you making these networking mistakes?

 

Effective networking can a real game-changer. Good networks can help you throughout your whole career whether that be finding a new job or helping you with the current job you are in. You need to  make sure you are making the most of all those conferences and events you’re attending. KennedyPearce have highlighted some mistakes many people make when trying to network; are you guilty of any of these?

 

1. Not Following Up

So you meet the perfect connections when networking, when you’re talking to them ideas are buzzing and you’re both keen to help each other. That’s great, but after your meeting are you going to keep the momentum going?

Or perhaps a different scenario occurs, you meet one person at a networking event and agree to send over your portfolio. However they then speak to a lot of people after you and you’re not sure if they were going to be all that helpful or if they would even remember you. Do you just leave it?

In both cases, it’s important to follow up on your networks. Take the time to send them an email, whether that’s sending them your portfolio like you said you would, keeping the conversation going or sending them information of worth. Perhaps you could even help them expand their network, if you’re not the right person they are looking for but you know someone who is then get them in touch. Both parties will be grateful and think of you in the future. With emails and the power of social media – LinkedIn and Twitter for most professionals, it is easier than ever to keep in touch with people you network with – so take advantage of that.

 

2. Not Saying Thank You

It’s important to show gratitude to your network connections. Remember what we just said about how keeping in touch with networks through social media and emails has never been easier? Right, well that means it’s never been easier to drop a thank you to someone. Make sure your networks know it is appreciated when you have a meeting, or when they invite you to an event or even when they put you in contact with someone else.

 

3. Being UnInformed

Which ever industry you work in it is important to keep updated in the latest news and reports. Take the time to read the news daily and find out what is happening. Or use a news grouping apps like Feedly to help you. Feedly picks out the keywords in your industry to compile lists of relevant website articles. Even if you have a job, take some time to keep updated. The knowledge will not only make you better at networking, giving you more insight and more conversational pieces, it will also help you in your own work too.

4. Too much talking, not enough listening

When networking be careful that you are not talking too much about yourself and all your achievements. You don’t want to overkill the meeting with your life story. Find a balance. Of course, you want to mention your successes, after all you earned the right to, but you don’t want to come across as an aspiring professional who takes no interest in anything beside their own ambitions. This is where the listening and asking questions part comes in. Find people with industries or careers of interest to you, and ask them questions: Where did they get their start? What do they love about their jobs, and what do they wish they could change? Not only will you make your contact feel valued, you will hopefully strengthen you connection and also you would have gained some new insights too.

 

Be mindful of these mistakes and adopt good social habits that you can improve upon. Remember networking isn’t about short-term gain. It’s about increasing your opportunities, forming valued relationships that last and improving yourself too.

 

 

 

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