When the startup company that Eric Thompson (name changed) worked for lost its major investors and closed abruptly, he realized something very scary...he didn’t know anyone.
Sure, he knew some people—but he had relocated for the position. That fact, coupled with an obviously misplaced sense of security in the opportunity and a hectic schedule, had left him with no real professional contacts in the city. His subsequent job search was lengthy and painful.
Eric’s situation is not uncommon. I hear about it all too often. Not just with those in a new city; in fact, most professionals do a poor job of maintaining a professional network. Typically, people start thinking about their professional network—their industry contacts—after losing their job. Thrust into a job search situation, they are desperate to make connections.
If this describes your current situation (or if you are gainfully employed), this article includes ideas to help you develop a valuable professional network.
What Is Professional Networking?
Professional networking is the creation and cultivation of business friendships and acquaintances. Those who do so effectively know its value. It is the life blood of strong and stable careers and businesses. Unfortunately, for many it is one of the most neglected aspects of professional development.
If you are wondering whether you have a strong professional network, it is likely that you do not. For some, creating a network of professionals that they correspond with regularly is natural. If that is the case, use the advice in this article to augment your natural talent in this area. If you struggle in this area, this article will provide a great starting point. Use the information to help develop a strong professional network as quickly as possible.