Networking isn’t always easy, and can be challenging in a virtual environment.
Here are some tips to help you navigate networking in a virtual world.
- Identify your networking goals. Think about your approach when networking and consider asking yourself the following questions: Who do you want to connect with? What do you want to gain from making a connection?
- Be thoughtful when making connections. Even if you are just getting started in your career or looking to transition into a new industry, your network may be more robust than you realize. Consider friends, family, and colleagues. Alumni networks are also a great way to make connections, as well as community or interest groups.
- Be prepared to communicate your personal brand. Make sure you know how to communicate your personal brand clearly and succinctly. Taking time to practice and prepare can pay off with a terrific interaction with a recruiter or a new acquaintance.
- Enhance your virtual profile. Ensure your profile on recruiting platforms, relevant job boards and professional networking sites is up-to-date, and amplifies your skills and passion for a particular role or industry. It is the first place employers might “meet you” so you want to make a good impression.
- Schedule a virtual coffee chat. Use this as an opportunity to learn more about a new industry, career, company, etc. Most professionals will make time to share observations about their organization and own career journey.
- Attend virtual events. Many conferences and forums have adapted to a virtual format, and offer an opportunity for attendees to network
- Stay in touch. Follow up with your new connections and invest in building a relationship over time. You never know where your career will take you so it’s important to look at anyone you connect with as a potential future colleague or supervisor.