You’ve heard the saying “Network is Key”. This means that your success depends largely on who you know and how well you connect with them. In other words, your network matters.
Networking is a powerful tool that can help you get ahead in life. Whether you want to start a new career or advance within your current role, building relationships with other professionals is key.
So, what does this mean for you? Well, it means that if you want to achieve success, networking is essential. And, contrary to popular belief, networking isn’t all about schmoozing and selling yourself. It’s also about helping others and being of service.
Networking is key
While networking is key to achieving success, it’s important to note that your performance also plays a significant role. In fact, research shows that network is linked to a 70% chance of promotion over your performance. This means that if you want to get ahead in your career, you need to focus on both your networking skills and your performance.
Fortunately, there are a number of ways you can improve your networking skills.
Here are a few tips:
- Get involved in professional organizations and attend events
- Seek out mentors and be a mentor yourself
- Connect with people online and offline
- Volunteer for projects and committees
- Be genuine, helpful, and authentic
If you want to be successful, networking is essential. By following the above tips, you can start building strong relationships that will help you get ahead in your career.
Some people focus only on internal networks which is dangerous as it is limiting.
It is important to focus on both internal and external networks. Internal networks can help with things like mentorship and sponsorship while external networks can provide access to new people, experiences, and opportunities.
External and internal mentors
Setup regular sessions with external and internal mentors and sponsors. This will help you to improve your skills, get new ideas, and gain exposure to different networks.
It is also important to focus on both long-term and short-term goals when networking. Long-term goals might include things like finding a mentor or building a strong network of connections. Short-term goals could be attending an industry event or connecting with a specific person.
Did you know that LinkedIn has over 660 million members? That’s a lot of potential connections!
Internal networks vs external networks
Some people focus only on internal networks which is dangerous as it is limiting. While others focus too much on external networks which are also dangerous. The truth is that both types of networks have their own advantages and disadvantages.
The good thing about an internal network is that it builds trust between employees. However, it takes longer for an employee to build trust than an external network.
An external network also has its own pros and cons. You should know that while it is easier to build trust, it is harder to maintain it once established. Also, since it is less formal, it can be more informal than an internal network.
So, if you’re unsure whether to focus on internal or external networks, here are a few pointers to help you decide:
- Focus on internal networks first – If you are just starting out, it’s a good idea to focus on internal networks. This will help you build trust and credibility within your organization.
- Focus on external networks second – Once you have established yourself, you can start focusing on external networks. This will help you expand your reach and connect with more people.
- Balance both types of networks – If you have the time and resources, you should focus on both internal and external networks. This will help you maximize your networking potential.
- Start small – Don’t try to connect with everyone at once. Start with a few people and grow your network over time. No matter what type of networking you choose to focus on, remember that the most important thing is to be genuine and authentic.
- Be helpful – When you are networking, always be looking for ways to help other people. Whether it’s introducing them to someone new or offering advice, your goal should be to add value to the relationship.
- Follow up – After connecting with someone new, make sure to follow up with them. Send them an email. By staying in touch, you will keep the relationship alive and growing.
- Keep it up – Networking is a lifelong process, so don’t stop once you have achieved your goals. Continue to meet new people and build relationships.
How impactful are you across the organisation?
Your network holds the key to the perception of how impactful you are across the organisation. If you have a large network, you are more likely to be perceived as having a large impact. Why? Because humans are social animals and we tend to gravitate towards those with similar networks.
So, if you want to be perceived as having a large impact, focus on growing your network.
The bigger your network, the more influential you will be perceived to be. However, remember to network with others who you think would add value to your career, not just those who you think can help you get ahead.
By networking with the right people, you can open doors to new opportunities and position yourself for success.
Are you ready to start networking?
If you want to achieve success in your career, networking is essential. By building strong relationships with other professionals, you can increase your chances of being promoted and improve your chances of success.
How are your skills valued?
Networking can also help you to understand how your skills are valued both internally and externally. When you network with others, you can get a better understanding of the skills that are in demand and the skills that are valued by employers. This knowledge can help you to update your skill set and make sure that you are marketable to potential employers.
It’s also important to remember that networking isn’t just about finding a job. It’s also about networking for information, networking for referrals, and networking for advice. By growing your network, you can gain access to a wealth of resources and support that can help you in your career.
When you know how your skills are valued, you can make better decisions about your career. For example, if you know that your skills are in high demand, you can feel confident about switching jobs or negotiating for a raise. On the other hand, if you know that your skills are not as valued as you would like them to be, you can focus on developing new skills or pursuing a different career path.
No matter what your career goals are, networking can help you to achieve them when compared to your performance. By building relationships with other professionals, you can open doors to new opportunities and position yourself for success.
So, what are you waiting for? Get out there and start networking!