Smart Goal Setting: How to Achieve Results from Networking
Most people think that networking is like gambling...roll the dice and hopefully you'll sit next to the right person, or hopefully you'll go to the right event where you meet the right people..Wrong! Networking should be strategic, with a plan that includes specific goals so that you know why you're spending your time and energy meeting specific people or going to specific events. If you want to see results from your networking, here are 3 great goals to have.
1. Build and maintain a professional network
Networking is more important than ever in the world of business today. By having contacts in different companies, you are able to build personal relationships with the people who could be offering you a job tomorrow. Having these types of professional relationships is the key to success. This is because people tend to do business with those that they trust. These relationships can also help you build your knowledge of the industry that you want to work in, and serve as referrals as you go to apply for jobs.
2. Establish and develop your personal brand
As you begin searching for a career and making connections with people in your industry or your desired industry, you will find that every other applicant/person has similar qualifications to you. The difference that will make you stand out is having and selling your personal brand to potential employers. Take some time to perform a self assessment and list all your qualities, knowledge, and skills that relate to your profession and how your unique gifts are an asset to potential employers.
3. Have a targeted destination job
During almost every interview you have, an employer will ask where you see yourself in 5 years. The best way to answer this question is by knowing your career goals. You should know the type of job you want, and what qualifications are necessary to obtain it. Do your research on the companies you apply for and see the different positions they offer as well as advancement opportunities. Have a clear picture in your mind about what your job will be like. Being able to answer this question at networking events will help guide you towards the people in your profession who you want to make connections with.