Networking is a vital part of career path development.
How can you be an effective "networker"?
Everyone you've met in your educational experiences, your past work experiences, and volunteering can be considered part of your network. These people are connected to others who expand your network even further. Students often forget to use their networks to their fullest potential.
- Use your network to access information.
- If you're in the job hunt, chat with family members, friends, co-workers about your intentions for the future.
- Keep communications open so that when opportunities arise, they'll think of you.
- Use LinkedIn to create a professional profile and connect with people.
- LinkedIn can be a very powerful tool for the job search and for networking.
- Make sure you have a complete profile.
- Follow companies you're interested in and join groups in your field and participate in the discussion.
- Don't be afraid to reach out to professionals — also known as an "informational interview".
- If you're interested in a specific field — like social work, dentistry, physiotherapy, medicine, law, etc — reach out to someone currently in that position.
- Informational interviews are also becoming more popular within certain industries. Try meeting with people in a company you're interested in to get more details on the organization and future opportunities with them.
- Be prepared with specific questions about the field.
- Join professional associations & get involved!
- Most cities have organizations for young professionals. Check them out, see when they meet and drop in to meet new people.
- Consider charities and volunteering — you'll be doing some important work in the community, and making connections at the same time.
There are often opportunities on campus for networking. Visit our events page for a list of upcoming events.
Check out some of the articles in the quick links box for more ideas!