Networking 101For the Financial Individual Presented By The Marketing Department of Penn Mutual
What is Networking? –noun 1. a supportive system of sharing information and services among individuals and groups having a common interest.
Networking Involves: Establishing goals. Analyzing the type of assistance you will need to achieve your goals. Developing your people skills. Building and cultivating your network. Maintaining your network through the years.
The Law of 250 Research information about your potential network contact and his/her field. Decide what information you would like to obtain from your contact and prepare a list of questions you would like to have answered (see “Guide to Informational Interviewing” for sample questions). Remember that you are representing yourself. Every person knows at least 250 other people. Each of your contacts knows at least 250 people. So that’s 62,500 at your 2nd level. Each of your 2nd level contacts knows 250 people - and that’s over 15,000,000!1st Step to Networking Assess your own interests, skills, knowledge areas, and personal attributes. Take stock so you can speak about yourself with enthusiasm.
The Layers of Separations You Level 1 Contact Level 2 Contact Level 3 Contact Level 4 Contact Your Friend “A” “A” ’sUncle “D” “D” ’sFriend “R” “R” ‘sBoss “D”
Understanding Level 1 Contacts Family/Friends Friends of Family/Neighbors Classmates/Alumni Contacts from Special Interest Groups (e.g., Sorority, Fraternity, Student organizations) Members of your religious congregation People dependant upon networking (e.g., realtors, insurance agents) Former employers/co-workers Recruiters/employers who give presentations on campus. Other job candidates LUC Alumni Sharing Knowledge (LUC-ASK) Professional Associations Contacts in the Career Center Former teachers, current professors and staff
What to Do Before Making Initial Contact Know the purpose of your call/email/inquiry What do you want to know? Know yourself – What are your goals and interests? Know the person and company with whom you are speaking Research the field to avoid asking questions you could answer on your own Develop an introductory script which summarizes your skills, experience and goals Practice your script with a friend or a colleague. Remember to prepare open-ended questions.
1st Steps to Efficient Networking Assess your own interests, skills, knowledge areas, and personal attributes. Take stock so you can speak about yourself with enthusiasm. Research information about your potential network contact and his/her field. Decide what information you would like to obtain from your contact and prepare a list of questions you would like to have answered (see “Guide to Informational Interviewing” for sample questions). Remember that you are representing yourself and Loyola as a whole.
The Initial Contact Purpose: Set up a meeting to discuss your needs, interests and goals. Level 1 Contacts: Call, e-mail or write a letter. Level 2, 3, etc. Contacts: Send an “Approach” letter followed by a phone call. ATTACH YOUR RESUME AND INDICATE THAT IT’S ONLY FOR REFERENCE
Keep in Mind The same obligations and courtesies that come with traditional face-to-face networking apply to online interactions. Treat people the way you’d like to be treated, both online and offline! Career-related online networking should eventually lead to other forms of contact like phone conversations or in-person meetings. Keep an eye out for alumni and student networking receptions which are also a great way to meet with alumni.
Oh No You Didn’t!- Things Not To Do! Do not ask for a job or internship (ask for advice, information, and other contacts). Do not spam with multiple e-mails or stalk with multiple phone calls. Do not act unprofessionally or negatively. Do not ask your contact to mass distribute your resume. Do not share their contact information with others unless you have permission to do so.
What your Contact can do for You! Ask them: To be part of your personal NETWORK. For advice & input. To recommend their tips for getting a foot in the door in this particular field or industry. To refer you to others who might be able to assist and give advice (ONLY if you are comfortable askin
Types of Networking
Meet Up Meetup.com is the world’s largest network of self-organized clubs and community groups. It makes it easy for anyone to organize a local group or find one of the thousands already meeting up face-to-face. More than 2,000 groups get together in local communities each day, each one with the goal of improving themselves or their communities. Meetup is not about virtual relationships, but face-to-face, honest-to-goodness interaction between neighbors.
LinkedIn Virtual Networking An Up to date Resume & Portfolio Ask for Referrals & recommendations and reach your goal of 250 connections!
Networking by (E-mail or Letter) Technique Your letter should include: A brief introduction and your affiliation with Loyola Why you are writing to this individual; why you are interested in this field or organization A brief statement of your interests and/or experience That you would like to schedule a 15-30 minute meeting with them over the phone or in person That you are asking for information and advice. Information about arrangements for the meeting or call with suggested dates, times and locations. Proofread all of your correspondence and be professional in your tone. Even if this is already an “acquaintance” you should be formal and professional with them.
Telephone Networking Tell them who you are, why you are calling & what you need. Always ask if this is a convenient time to talk. Tell them you don’t expect an immediate answer - ask if you can call them back at a later date.
Networking Etiquette & Tips
Act Professionally Be polite, respectful, and charming! Dress professionally for in-person meetings. Have 10-15 appropriate questions ready to ask for a half hour conversation, (see Networking Guidelines for examples of informational interview questions). Research the people you may meet. This always surprise them & makes you stand out from the masses. Be prepared for the person to ask you about your interests and experiences. Be respectful of the person’s time and keep the conversation short; they will let you know if they have additional time to share. Say “Thank You” at the conclusion of your conversation!
Organizing your Network
Contact name, title, company
Address, Phone # & E-Mail address
How you met contact
Date last contacted
Names of referrals
Date of thank-you note for referrals
Other follow up steps you took
Use a spreadsheet or notebook to keep track of contacts and what you discussed:
Common Networking Boo Boo’s Voicemail / Answering Machine – have a professional voicemail message. Social Networking websites – Keep your profile professional. Many people can access your information, even if your privacy settings are set to the maximum! Email address – again, keep it professional! Do not use something like “cutygirl89@hotmail” or “johnny420@yahoo”—those will not make good impressions. Really utilize your Penn Mutual Email.
Great People Skills Be Polite Always remember please, thank you & how do you do’s. Assert yourself positively and confidently. Ask good questions. Be a good listener. Be viewed as knowledgeable or skillful in a particular area. Show interest in being of assistance to others.
The Networking Facts:
75% of people get their jobs through networking.
Many positions are filled before they are even posted!
People like to be “heroes”
People love to give advice People like being thought of as “experts” Networking is not just asking for help, but agreeing to be helpful in return.
Final Thoughts… Don’t let your “rolodex” gather dust – keep in touch through sending occasional emails, updates, links to articles, etc. Keep your contacts up-to-date on your progress. Always thank people! DON’T STOP NETWORKING!