We will be presenting recommendations for building and improving career insurance to reach your career goals for the short and long-term.
People who are not naturally drawn to professional networking often tell me they don't realize how important it is until they lose a job. In light of the social networking buzz this topic is in the process of evolving and changing as well. Tools like LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter are great if you are utilizing them with a specific purpose. They also have advantages and disadvantages like any technology.
Although online networking sites provide a highly efficient way to cultivate contacts, they are not a replacement for personal interactions. Face-to-face meetings build rapport and relationships in a way that electronic communication cannot replicate. Continue to meet new people in-person even when you land your ideal "job". This can be a blind spot for many people. It's smart to build a wide, diverse range within your network. In other words, going beyond your field, industry or area of expertise to meet and get to know people.
Focus on helping others when you network. I keep hearing about how people have become more self-centered because of social media and less engaged in diplomacy or non-dramatic communication. It's practical and wise to authentically introduce people, offer a reference, offer solutions and, or even volunteer. It will come back to you, if you believe in what you are doing.
Many people are working longer hours than ever, especially due to the shrinking teams over the past year. Those who are working tell me they have little time to network or return calls and emails from people seeking their time for networking. I recommend putting one date aside on the calendar for 1-2 hours each month to follow-up with those folks by phone. They will understand and appreciate your follow through.
Remember to thank people as often as you can. Gratitude has sadly been neglected more recently due to economic stressors and people's demanding schedules.