What is Networking?
Networking is developing relationships or contacts with individuals with the goal of sharing information and furthering your career. Effective networking will build your base of contacts for future reference and provide a support system as you explore and pursue career goals.
Successful Networkers are:
- Open-minded and willing to meet new people.
- Prepared and persistent.
- Informed and up-to-date on current happenings in the chemical workforce/news.
- Respectful and appreciative of their time as well as others.
- Able to set clear, realistic, and achievable goals.
How to Conduct a Successful Networking Session
1. Establish your goal
Are you looking to network with a specific person, or are you wanting to improve on your skills overall? Stating your goal to the Career Consultant will better help you reach it.
2. Prepare to Connect
Even though this is a practice session, come prepared to actually networking with your consultant. Have a list of questions that you would like to ask in advance, and update your resume before having the conversation.
3. Have the Conversation
Start by giving information about you. If you are graduating soon, let them know. Speak about your specific skills and what type of position/organization you are seeking. Ask for advice on how they entered their field, seek suggestions on other people you should speak to, if you have business cards, bring them and prepare to hand them out for follow up.
4. After the Conversation
Express your appreciation for their time and note any action items that came of the conversation.
5. Manage the Connection
Find a way to manage your most important contacts and maybe a detail of the conversation. Develop a plan for follow-up and set reminders to connect in the future.
6. Grow Your Network
Networking is a continuous process. As an ACS member, you will have many opportunities to network with others and grow your contact base. Send an email with a resource that may be helpful or invite your contacts out to a coffee or lunch to stay in touch.
7. Set Networking Goals
Really think about how many people you’d like to connect with and stay in touch with. Continue to grow your networking by introducing current contacts to others.