The Power of Networking for Administrative Professionals

Networking isn’t just a buzzword: it’s a game-changer for our careers. 

Connecting with others in our industry unlocks unlimited opportunities, by handing us tools for career advancement, promoting connections to refine skills, and opening access to invaluable resources. It provides community, in an industry where you’re often working remotely (aka, alone.)  Networking, in short, is essential.

Below are some valuable networking tips and insights to ensure your efforts are not only fruitful but enjoyable. Let’s get connecting!

  1. Set Clear Goals.
    Before fully diving in, establish some objectives. What do you hope to achieve through networking? Advance your career, gain industry insights, find a mentor? Whatever your goals may be, having them in place and at the forefront of your mind will help tailor networking tools and help you make the most of interactions.
  2. Build an Online Presence.
    Think of it as a first impression: if someone were to Google you, what would they find? You want to have your best foot forward from the get-go. Building a professional LinkedIn profile, for example, is a smart way to showcase your skills, achievements, and aspirations. Keep it up-to-date with experiences and accomplishments. Engage with your network by sharing relevant articles, joining industry groups, and connecting with your field. Through the process of building a strong online presence, you’ll make yourself more accessible and show a commitment to your career.
  3. Attend Industry Events.
    Networking fundamentals don’t have to be online-only; get out there, and shake some hands! Attend area conferences, seminars, workshops – anything relevant to your industry or profession. You’ll build a community through meeting like-minded individuals and making personal connections.
  4. Join Professional Associations.
    This is where you’ll find a treasure trove of networking how-to opportunities. Becoming a member of industry-specific organizations will provide access to a network of professionals who are invested in your industry’s growth and success. These associations often host events, seminars, and conferences that can be instrumental in keeping you informed of industry trends and – again – build that community.
  5. Build Relationships, Not Just Contacts.
    This is not a baseball card trading game, this is your career. Focus on quality over quantity when looking at networking how-to. Focus on getting to know people on a personal level, understand their goals, and offer support where you can. You’ll find that by building genuine, lasting relationships you’ll gain so much more than just business. You’ll build a community of networking basics: invaluable sources of advice, collaboration, and opportunity.
  6. Follow-up.
    This part is crucial! What sets successful networkers apart, is a commitment to follow-up following an initial connection. After meeting someone – in person or online – you’ll make a big impact by sending a thoughtful thank-you or LinkedIn connection request with a personalized note. It’s a simple gesture that shows genuine interest in a person, and helps solidify a connection.

Effective networking fundamentals open doors and fuel professional growth. You’ll find a higher rate of career satisfaction, knowing you are building a community of professionals who share your passions and goals. Take that first step, get out there, and start growing with the help of this networking how-to!