There was a time when general networking events were a great venue for making initial contacts with companies of interest. Today, you can still build contacts at these events, but most of them will be other job seekers. This is not necessarily a waste of time; you can share news about opportunities and find “job search buddies” this way. However, if you’re seeking to make contacts with company representatives open networking events may not be the best venue.
The purpose of networking is to meet individuals with access to decision-makers or insider knowledge of your targeted company or industry. You will have better success at this if you concentrate on venues with opportunities to build relationships tailored to your specific goals.
Here are a few suggestions to get you started.
- Professional Associations: Make a point of meeting the officers or membership chairs. Volunteer to help at events or serve on a committee.
- Community leaders and local officials: Attend council meetings or volunteer for community activities or political campaigns.
- Alumni events: This is an easy way to build familiarity with people who share a common history.
- Trade shows for your targeted industry: Work the room and network with vendors serving companies in which you have an interest.
Don’t forget, it’s not just about showing up. It’s about showing up at the right places!
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Copyright 2010 – Dumont Gerken Owen. All Rights Reserved.Opening Windows to Your Career Success!
Dumont Gerken Owen, Ph.D