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Do you have any tips on getting connections and networking?

I want to pursue a career revolving around business and finance. I know that around this career and life in general, networking and having connections is really important and can be used as an advantage. #business #networking #finance #entrepreneur #connections

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Subject: Career question for you

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18 answers


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Holly’s Answer

Hi Linh, I think a really great way to start building connections is by utilizing a LinkedIn profile, and if you're currently a college student, attending recruiting and career events. Creating a LinkedIn profile will allow you to connect with professionals in your desired industry and message them with any questions or interests you might have in their field or company. You can filter your LinkedIn searches by school and find alumni who might work somewhere you're interested in, and this is a great opportunity to reach out via direct message expressing your interest in order to build your network. If you attend university, there are likely some great networking opportunities being hosted by your career center. Always be on the lookout for companies who might be visiting your campus or holding a webinar, and make sure you attend these, introduce yourself, and connect with the recruiter in order to stay in touch and have your name recognized when it comes to application time. The most important thing to remember is to always introduce yourself, express interest, and stay in touch!
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Erika’s Answer

Hi Linh,
In addition to LinkedIn and getting involved in your local community advise mentioned above, I recommend joining a Toastmaster International local club. There are clubs that meet in person and online. Its a great way to develop leadership and pubic speaking skills but you also gives you the opportunity to network with folks in several industries at all stages of their careers. I have been a toastmaster member for 12 years and the relationships I have made through this organization has helped me. Also being a member helps you build connections when you met other toastmasters weather is at a job interview or on the job. Find a local club and visit (no pressure to join). Also encourage you to visit several clubs as they all offer something different.

Erika recommends the following next steps:

Visit a Toastmaster Club - https://www.toastmasters.org/find-a-club
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Emily’s Answer

Always connect with connections on LinkedIn after meeting someone; ask to grab coffee - most people will say yes; send thank you notes and include a specific takeaway from the meeting; get out in your local community to volunteer or attend career events.
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Edward’s Answer

In my view LinkedIn is the best tool.
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Carlyn’s Answer

Hi,

If you are in college or previously attended college I would go to your college or universities LinkedIn's page, from there you can search alumni based on companies you are interested in. I would recommend sending a personalized note to the person you are interested in connecting with and suggest a few times you are available to speak with them in the coming weeks. It is best to share a bit about your background and why you are interested in connecting with this person.
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Peter’s Answer

First off, Linkedin, college campus groups, and external clubs/organizations like toastmaster are great entries to building a network.

However, I would say don't limit your network to just these resources. Think broader in the network in the people of your life (particularly in a variety of social settings) as you never know who knows who (which is similar to the concept of 3rd degree+).

With Linkedin, there is still a difference between them being in your network and actually having a relationship with them. So I would also add to follow-up once in a while and try to connect with individuals that you could develop a more meaningful connections.

A great book to read is called "How to win friends and influence people" - Dale Carnegie
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Phil’s Answer

Step 1: surround yourself with people you admire
Step 2: talk to them
A lot of people here have mentioned LinkedIn. Personally, I believe nothing comes close to meeting people in person, looking them in the eye, shaking their hand, and introducing yourself.
Use LinkedIn to meet these people in person.
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Christian’s Answer

I would say a pivotal tool I used to grow and expand my network is the use of Linkedin especially in the finance industry. Whether it was making a connection with someone that attended the same university as me or someone who has a mutual connect I believe that connecting and making introductions for myself is something that has helped me in my career thus far.
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Meagan’s Answer

Definitely consider joining LinkedIn, any organizations or student groups at your school, etc.
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Patrick’s Answer

LinkedIn is a great way to grow your "virtual" network, because it allows you to connect with individuals you know in real life, but also people you may have heard of or met in passing. A tactic I use as well is trying to find or meet someone in the industry you want to work in, and ask them to take some time to have a conversation with you. In that conversation explain why you're interested in the industry and ask about ways you can continue to connect with people in the industry to further grow your network. You never know if one of those connections might have a way to help you down the road.
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Elizabeth’s Answer

Great suggestions given on LinkedIn, clubs, organization etc.

But also think smaller. Pay attention to how you interact in a social setting. Do you stick with the same people all the time? Most of us do.

When I am at work related social functions, I make it a point to introduce myself to and speak with at least two people I don't know. Make small talk. Ask what they do, what is there connection to the event, etc. I also like asking their back round and what was their career path. The small connections can lead to big wins. Sometimes we need to travel a windy road to get to our destination.
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Rosa’s Answer

Hi Linh,
Good question and here's a great way to get started, join a volunteering event either in school, your community or library as a few examples. These events connect you with like minded people, where everyone is helping a common cause and you can learn more about the individuals and their goals or the organizations they work for and their goals. These connections that you create are important both in your personal and worklife.

Good luck with making long lasting connections.
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Lisa’s Answer

Building a network will certainly help support your career and find new opportunities. As many have said LinkedIn is a great platform to identify possible connections and to build relationships. From a work experience perspective, many companies offer internships, work experience placements and graduate programs - determine the ones that are of interest to you and look for people working there/involved to start off your networking.

When I am hiring and looking for someone to join my team, I am looking outside of just the work experience - is someone involved in charity work, community activities, volunteering programs - not only are these great places to learn but it is another network which you can leverage -social networks (physical and virtual) work. Remember to reconnect - these aren't one time interactions - they should be a two way relationship established over time.

A network should have lots of variety - people from different companies, levels, background, experience; keep in touch with family and friends - as they make changes and advancements in their career, work in different companies, it is also another opportunity.

Building and maintaining a network takes time - but it is well worth it! When I moved to my current company, within a few months, several colleagues who had worked with me previously were also successful in joining the same company - I highlighted opportunities to them and if they were interested I would support them with any questions as they prepared for interviews. Getting the role was all down to them - using their network pushed that door open!
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Brian’s Answer

Hi Linh,

Great question!

What works the best for me is face to face interactions in everyday life scenarios. Go out and meet people. It doesn't matter where or what you're doing. It can be at the gym or at your local coffee spot. Although job fairs and LinkedIn are good tools, sometimes the best way to connect and build networks is by just speaking to people you are around often that have similar interests. For example, the gym or surfing. Right off the bat, you already know you have something in common and it makes that connection so much stronger. I love to work out and some of the most influential people i have met in my life have been randomly at the gym. So my advice to you is this; Go out, have fun, and don't be shy. You never know who knows who and who you will run into. I hope this helps!

Best,
Brian J Criscione
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Nandita’s Answer

I think one of the biggest ways to network is definitely through LinkedIn. Searching on LinkedIn for your specific university allows you to find alumni working in the roles you are looking to apply for and alumni at the companies you are applying to. Typically, these people are very helpful in giving you advice to apply or interview for a specific position! Send a simple message introducing yourself, showing interest in their position/company, mentioning the fact that they are an alumni from your school and then requesting a brief call. In this call, you can understand more about their position and ask any questions you may have about interviewing, or their day to day responsibilities, etc. It may even help to ask if they recommend anyone else you should talk to to get more advice. At the end of the phone call, you could even ask for an email to reach out to this contact in the future, and help to build a relationship!
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Joanna’s Answer

My number one advice is to join campus groups or student organizations and be an active participant. Also, make sure to get to know a couple of your favorite professors. They can be extremely helpful now or in the future. I have one key professor that inspired me and is the main reason I went into Healthcare as an Engineer. Take the time to build relationships. It is key.
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Nick’s Answer

I believe that it is a mix between volume and fostering important relationships. I believe it is important to try and speak to as many people as possible, as you never know who is going to be the person who offers you your next job or helps you progress your career. With that being said though, you will, inevitably meet people who help you along the way and make sure to foster the relationship. Send thank you cards, send a text or email every once in a while to check in. Lastly, I will say that 99% of people are happy to talk and are normally excited that somoni would ask them, so don't be afraid to reach out to people.
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Rick’s Answer

Another great way to build and expand your network is through your friends and family. Share the types of jobs you are interested in and ask if they know of anyone that you could talk to to learn more. When you talk to them and ask a lot of questions, it shows your interest and starts the dialogue. If they don't have the type of job you are looking for, ask them to give you additional names of people you can talk to. Pretty soon you will build a sizable network. Check back in with these contacts from time to time and keep showing your interest.
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