Networking Takes Time…Be Patient

If you’ve ever been to a networking event, there’s nothing more annoying than someone who is there for the first time and trying to sell whatever it is they’re selling. There are tons of networking groups out there for you to join and attend, but don’t go in there trying to sell yourself instantly and pushing your product on to people. Not only will you NOT make a sale or make a good connection, you’re going to hurt your image and ruin any potential working relationship that you may have established. An entire potential network could be wiped out for you, all because you couldn’t approach the situation correctly.

Job seekers? This is equally as important for you. I know it can be hard to go to a networking event, when your whole intention is to find a connection for a job, and not ask about the possibility with the people you’re meeting. But if this is the first time you’ve ever met this person, and you’re asking them for a job? It’s going to end badly. They’re not going to offer you a job, and they might talk about you to others in the network or industry about how you had the gall to ask for a job within five minutes of meeting.

So what’s the proper method? Establish a relationship first. Just get to know these individuals. Ask them about their careers and get to know them on a personal level. Then maybe after a few conversations and a few networking events, they’ll know you enough to know you’re looking for a job and maybe you can work in the “if you know of anyone who’s hiring” or heck, maybe they’ll bring it up themselves.

Networking takes time, dedication, perseverance, and EFFORT. Some people are naturally better at networking than others, that doesn’t mean you can’t do it, and it certainly doesn’t mean you shouldn’t. If you seriously want to make inroads into an industry and move up in the chain of command, networking is a must. Simply doing a good job will only take you so far. Being able to communicate and meet the people that might make that promotion/advancement possible is just as important, if not more so.

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About Jason Willis
Jason graduated from the University of Central Florida in the fall of 2011 with a B.S.B.A. in Finance. He currently works at The Newport Group as an Investment Analyst on the Asset & Liability Management Team working with Non Qualified Deferred Compensation Plans. In his spare time he continues to give back to AKPsi by assisting with the CFAC and NX Chapter at UCF. He also currently operates his own blog entitled Professional Hedging, and is also preparing to acquire his Series 7 and 66 Certifications.

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