76.7 F
Houston

Tips for Networking During the Pandemic

Tips for Networking During the Pandemic

Tips for Networking During the Pandemic

A large percentage of Americans are either out of work or under the looming threat of losing their jobs due to the current pandemic and are searching for new employment within their field or a new career entirely. Research has long shown that anywhere from 50% to up to 80% of jobs are filled through networking. So amid all the social distancing measures, is networking during the pandemic to find a new job even still possible?

One important distinction to be aware of is that the commonly used phrase of “social distancing” is actually somewhat of a misnomer. What is being referred to as “social distancing” should really be more normally called “physical distancing.” While we are maintaining physical space between each other for health reasons, we adapt and find new ways to stay connected socially, arguably even more now than ever before. 

It could also be argued that without the barrier of location, networking has never been more convenient. Nothing can ever take the place of connecting with someone in person (which will inevitably be possible again hopefully soon). But the ways we can adapt our networking strategies during the pandemic in this temporary reality are critical and important, and will possibly enhance the way we continue to network in the future. 

Here are 6 tips for networking during the pandemic:

1. Leverage your current network

2. Network with your colleagues

3. Connect with people on Linkedin and social media

4. Learning-centered networking

5. Schedule virtual meetings

6. Be consistent

1. Leverage your current network

Our first tip for networking during the pandemic is to start with and build up what you have. A person’s current networking connections are usually more extensive than they are aware of. 

Think of old college friends or former coworkers you’ve lost touch with and begin rebuilding relationships. Don’t worry if you haven’t communicated in a while. Now, more than ever, is it acceptable and welcome to check in on people and see how they are doing. 

Remember that the most effective networking is all about what you can give, not what you can get. It is all about relationships built in the good times, not just asking for favors in the rough times. The more foundation the relationship has and substance you’ve given, the more willing the other person will be to reciprocate with assistance when needed and pass along opportunities that make them think of you when they come across them. 

2. Network with your colleagues

Another tip for networking during the pandemic is to network with your colleagues. 

If you, like many others this season, have switched over to working remotely, make sure you are communicating effectively with your coworkers and supervisors. 

Check-in with them and keep them updated on what you are working on more than you normally would. Stay accountable, on time, and up-to-date with your work to display the soft skills that will help you remain a dependable asset for your company.

3. Connect with people on Linkedin and social media

Our next tip for networking during the pandemic is to use Linkedin and social media effectively. 

Social media is tailor-made for this kind of challenge. There has never been a better time to re-evaluate the advantages of these outlets and educate yourself on ways to use them as tools to better promote yourself.

Take some time and effort to update your online profiles and identity so that you are presenting yourself professionally. 

Use the opportunity of social media to find people within your field or the career you aspire to and become active members on their page or a community group page of common interest. Make worthwhile comments and contribute to discussions. Become a go-to member for reliable information and communication by offering any expertise you have on the subject. And always encourage and support other members along the way.

If you are in the market for a new job, or are considering boosting or changing your career, become current on Linkedin. Intended as a networking site for professionals, the connections you make on Linkedin could very well lead you to your next job opportunity. 

4. Learning-centered networking

Next on the list of tips for networking during the pandemic is to take advantage of online earning networks. 

Have you been wanting to learn a new skill, get in shape, or explore a new career? There has never been a better time to take advantage of online classes, virtual conferences, and webinars. Even more so because these online learning opportunities usually come with a group of fellow students, enthusiasts, or members who could potentially become an asset to your network. 

Be an active and involved member of your group and find others with whom you can share or swap information and favors. 

5. Schedule virtual meetings

In normal circumstances, when you meet people you seem to connect with, you would invite them out for a coffee or similar meet up to explore the connection further. But when networking during the pandemic and physical distancing, the next best thing is to schedule virtual meetings. 

You can still explore these connections further and more personally, but you might just have to meet up virtually instead. Agree on a time that works for you both and make it fun! Share a coffee over Zoom, or have a Skype happy hour. And if you find you have more to share and talk about, make it a weekly “meet-up”!

6. Be consistent

The most important thing to keep in mind when networking during the pandemic is that consistency is key. 

Everyone has been affected in some way by events this past year, some more than others. And you never know to what extent a person’s life has changed and what they might be dealing with. So if someone is taking a long time to get back to you, just be patient and extend some grace and empathy. 

Relationships are not built in a day, and neither are networks. So don’t be discouraged if it is taking some time to build up your connections. But the more consistent and available you remain on your platforms, the more chances you give opportunities to come your way. 
Like this content and want more? Read more about local business tips here. And be sure to subscribe to our newsletter at Dock Line Magazine so you don’t miss out on getting more free content like this straight to your email!

- Advertisement -spot_img

More Articles

1 COMMENT

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here


Featured

- Advertisement -spot_img