The most important part of “making it” is connectivity to people. You could be the smartest and most decorated candidate for a job, but if you don’t have the right references, mentors, and people working for you, you have nothing. While the Choose901 Alumni exists to have fun with you and to help you with jobs and internships, our whole mission is to connect you with the people you need so you can thrive. Networking is one of the most effective ways of connecting with folks, so here are a few tips of how to make that happen:
- It’s all about the follow-up. You could spend time and energy trying to talk to folks at events, through social media or through email about exchanging information and expertise, but it means nothing if you don’t follow back up and have a good strategy. Any time you talk with a career connection, meet someone important in your field, or interview for a job, ALWAYS follow up via email, phone or with a note card.
- Know who you need. What’s the vision for your life and career? What do you hope to accomplish? And who do you need to help make that happen? With all of the knowledge made available in the digital age, you can find almost anyone’s contact information and reach out for a meeting or call.
- Be attentive and curious. Take notes. Have questions already prepared to ask. Think of questions on the spot that interests you. Are there next steps you need to take after the meeting? Tell the person you’re meeting with that you’ll follow up with those things.
- Practice. It takes time and repetition to master the art of talking and networking, especially with folks that you aren’t used to running with. Be gracious to yourself and always strive to get better.
Pay it forward. When you “make it”, ‘cause we know you will, pass along your wisdom, wealth and influence to the next generation of leaders in our city.