For this week’s #ProCircles chat, our guest host Rich Grant (@ThomasCareer) lead the the discussion on advanced networking tips and best practices. A big thank you to Rich for his advice and all those who participated with their own!
Remember, you can join us for our next #ProCircles chat Thursday, June 28, at 8pm EST!
If you weren’t able to make the chat, or need a reminder, here is the recap:
Q1: How do you define networking? What is it? With whom do you network?
Rich Grant: Networking is the process of building and maintaining professional relationships… but not necessarily being all “business”
Ellisse: I network with everyone I meet, every connection you make is important
Guy Davis: Networking is developing a relationship that is mutually beneficial for all parties
Q2: What’s your personal experience with networking in a job search? While on the job? Selling something?
Rich Grant: I learned a lot about networking the hard way, after getting downsized. The economy was poor and networking was critical!
Rich Grant: One thing I learned from networking in a job search is the importance of the 30-second elevator speech. Must be focused!
Jess ‘Babs’ Bahr: I network 24/7 so when I need something (like a job) I don’t seem desperate
Follow-up: If you’re advising someone new to network, how do you suggest they get started?
Rich Grant: To get started, I say start with the people you know, good family friends, and ask them for referrals
Q3: How do you manage your network as it grows?
Rich Grant: It’s hard sometimes when you get busy. But I try to stay in touch with people, even if it’s quick
Ellisse: Sending LinkedIn messages, sharing relevant articles to people who might be interested, scheduling meetups
Rich Grant: I keep almost all my emails. I scroll thru old emails and send a quick “hi” to someone I haven’t interacted w/ in a while
Q4: If you’ve been networking in a job search, how do you maintain your network once you land a job?
Rich Grant: Once you land a position, it’s important to reach out and thank the people who supported you through the search process
Dave Walls: Keeping in touch with your network, showing the same interest in their needs, too. You’ve gotta be there for them, as well.
Jess ‘Babs’ Bahr: If you drop contacts when you get a job it makes it seem like you were using them, keep in contact!
Ellisse: Invite your contacts out for coffee to catch up or send them an email asking about a project they are working on
Q5: Do you typically meet people in person first then connect on LinkedIn, or do you connect on LI without having met in person?
Rich Grant: When I was new at LI, it helped that my network (1st degree) was made up of people I knew so I could tap into 2nd degree
Guy Davis: For me both has worked. Connecting on LI with mentors and meeting connections on LI then meeting face-to-face later
Follow-up: What are your networking dos and don’ts?
Rich Grant: Dos and don’ts -stay focused & be clear what you are looking for. Give back as much as you take. Help people, they’ll help you
Ellisse: Make sure you have a clear reason why you are connecting & be respectful of your contact’s time
Q6: How do you effectively use Twitter, LI, FB to network?
Rich Grant: An effective strategy is to demonstrate your expertise. Particiapate in groups; particiapate in “Answers” in LI
Dave Walls: Watch what you post on your social network. If you post a lot of junk, your connections will be less likely to recommend you!
Guy Davis: I have met some great people in tweet chats like this one. FB for me very social but I do connect with pros on FB
Rich Grant: The more you can be a useful resource to others, the more people will follow you (and ask you to guest host a Twitter chat)
Q7: What “expert” tips can you share about how you’ve optimized your network?
Rich Grant: On LI, I connect with diverse network (industry, geog, etc) because searches for that 2nd and 3rd degree will be enhanced
Guy Davis: Have a solid core in your career field by diversifying, Connections in related and unrelated industries are helpful too
Jess ‘Babs’ Bahr: By focusing on how I can help my network, through what I tweet/share, following up, introducing connections, etc
Rich Grant: Post interesting stuff. People will pay attention to you