We all have heard the career advice promoting networking. Yet, despite all the apparent benefits, many people fail to maintain relationships or meet new people on a regular basis. A lot of the blame is placed on being too busy to network. In my recent Work Reimagined post on “I’m Too Busy to Network!” I share 3 solutions to help busy people make time for networking:
As a former recruiter, I saw firsthand how the vast majority of candidates we hired came via networking. As a former HR director, I have also seen firsthand that career advancement results from networking – people with strong allies and supporters got the plum assignments and promotions. Making connections, deepening relationships and maintaining these contacts over time are critical. Unfortunately, networking rarely makes it to the top of our urgent to-do lists, so it is often an afterthought as we go about our busy days. As an experienced professional, your network is much more complex than when you started your career, adding to the difficulty in managing and maintaining these key relationships. Here are 3 shortcuts to help you maximize your networking with minimal time disruption:
- Use online tools like TimeTrade or GenBook to schedule easily and flexibly
Trying to get together with someone invariably means spending several emails just setting a date. Multiply this by everyone in your network, and you might be scheduling meetings all day! Use online appointment systems like TimeTrade or GenBook to schedule catch-up phone calls, lunches or coffee dates with minimal back and forth. For example, I block off several hours each week for serendipitous networking. Then, when I meet someone at a conference or when someone is referred to me, I don’t need to think about when I can pick up that conversation. I point them to my TimeTrade link, they see my availability, and they sign up directly.
See two more tips in my latest post for Work Reimagined: I’m Too Busy to Network!