Networking is an essential skill to master during university and throughout your career. In simple terms, it’s making connections which can help you get ahead in your career. Building your contacts can help you discover opportunities and provide you with career guidance. Here’s all the networking advice you need and more.
What is networking and where can I use it?
Networking is the exchange of information and ideas among those with a common interest or profession - this can be via an informal social setting or online through professional networking sites like LinkedIn. Networking can be used in various areas, from assessment centres and careers fairs, to the colleagues at your current job or to other students on your university course. Networking doesn’t have to be with someone who’s a professional or expert in a certain topic, it can be with people you’re interested in, especially if they are doing a job you’re looking to go into, or it can even be with friends.
Learn how to perfect your LinkedIn profile ready for your networking journey to begin.
Networking tips and advice
Networking is all about having a conversation with someone. Have a think about the sort of questions you would like to ask, but failing that, the best advice is to be interesting and interested. Whether you want to work the room or you care about making genuine connections, we’ve got you covered.
Key benefits of networking
Networking can have amazing benefits, not just for your career but also your confidence. Here’s some of the key benefits of networking:
- Discussing fresh ideas - if you’ve heard of the phrase, ‘two heads are better than one,’ you might know that this is often the case. Talking to someone new who is working or interested in your industry can spark new ideas and conversations.
- Develop lasting connections - networking is not about meeting people for two minutes and never speaking to them again. The point is to make effective and lasting connections with those in and around your industry, as who knows what the future could bring - you could work together or you may be put forward for a job they think you’d be great at.
- Get career advice - speaking to those in your industry can be extremely beneficial if you’re looking for advice. Everyone you speak to has a different story and experiences, so they might be able to offer you some tips or advice on something you’re aiming to achieve.
How to build your network
While what you know certainly does matter, who you know is also highly-important when it comes to carving out a successful career. Building a network can take time and patience, but our CEO & Founder, James Uffindell, is here to offer his unmissable advice:
To learn more read our top tips on how to network and build contacts.
How to make the most out of careers events & fairs
If you’ve been to university it’s likely you’ll have come across a careers fair, but if you haven’t, don’t stress. They can be daunting, but if you attend with a goal and questions in mind, you’ll be just fine. Here’s what you need to know about networking at careers events or fairs.
Whether you want to learn more about networking, or you want to work on your presentation skills, the Bright Network Academy core career skills course will help you develop these skills you’ll need throughout your career.