Summary: Take advantage of networking using these creative and fun ways so that the experience is more enjoyable.
Hearing the word “network” is probably just about the last word you want to hear. I’m sure you don’t like to do it and would much rather be doing something else but it is a necessary evil. Finding a job or succeeding in a career has turned into a case of who you know not what you know. Luckily for you there are many ways to network that are fun and will result in more genuine relationships.
Volunteer – Dedicate your free time to a worthy cause. Choose something you are passionate about and then find a volunteer position with that organization that applies to your career. Volunteering allows you to show what you can do instead of just telling someone you can at a typical networking event.
Social media – Take to social media to connect with others. Twitter, Google+, and LinkedIn are all great places to reach out to others in your industry. This is a great way to network for those that are introverts and are especially nervous about in-person meetings.
Side projects with contributors – Most knowledgeable experts enjoy the opportunity to show off their expertise. Ask experts in your industry to contribute or collaborate on a side project will help grow valuable connections. Make sure it is easy for them to participate. Not only do you get to gain a greater network but you also end up with a project to add to your resume or portfolio.
Meetups – Find creative ways to meet with interesting people outside of industry events. Try meetup.com for established gatherings or create your own. These gatherings can be with others that share your love for a recreational activity or hobby or that share professional experience and skills. Networking beyond business attire will make the experience more casual and enjoyable.
Read these related articles to learn more:
- 5 Tips to Help Introverts Network
- Don’t Forget to Give Back with Volunteer Work
- 5 TED Talks to Help You Network
Photo: histio.orgCreative Ways to Network by Amanda Griffin