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How can one build her/his network?

I'm still an undergraduate student, and would like to expand my network.The trouble is I don't know where to start or even how to begin. Any suggestions based on experience? #networking

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Sean’s Answer

If you mean your professional network, then there are a few things you should consider doing:

  1. Look for local professional organizations related to the field you're trying to build a network in. For example, someone in my field (training/development) would do well to look for a local chapter of the Association for Talent Development (ATD) to find other people to meet and connect with.

  2. LinkedIn is fantastic for networking. You can find individuals who work in the field you're studying for, and also find groups related to those same professions/topics. Lots of opportunity there.

  3. Don't be afraid to take advantage of your professors' office hours. Put in the extra time to go in and pick their brains, take their advice, and follow through on some of their suggestions. They can often suggest networking opportunities that are ideal for those who are still students.

Hope that helps!

Thanks Seans! I've always heard others talk about how important it is to take advantage of a professors' office hours, and I think I'll do start doing that. Anudari A.

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Kevin’s Answer

This is a great question, as it is never too early to begin building your professional network. I think your network can be built by simply talking to people. I know that sounds very basic, but I think if you pay close attention tasking questions while speaking with people rather than doing most of the talking, you will notice your conversations will begin to take form of being a lot more informative than they may have been in the past. Also, it is oay to ask people you talk to for advance openly, even if they would be okay with mentoring you. You'd be surprised how often people would be delighted to give back.

Hope this helps!


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Jason’s Answer

Hi Anudari,

My number one way for networking is to investigate your school's or work's volunteer opportunities. You always meet the best people at a volunteer event and you instantly have something to talk about the next time you see them. Good luck!