Whether you work remotely, in a cubicle or a serviced office kl, there’s no denying the power a strong professional network can have over your career success. These days, having a network of contacts, connections and people to partner with is more important than ever. But for many of us, small talk is a dreaded affair that can be perceived as time-consuming, downright awkward on occasion and seemingly a waste of perfectly good name cards.
Oftentimes, people misunderstand networking as an opportunistic practice lacking authenticity. Here’s where it’s important to understand what networking is and is not. Simply put, the act of “networking” is when one creates connections with other individuals with the intention of potentially making long-term friendships, where transactions are mutually beneficial. It can also be classified as a series of information exchanges with various parties. According to marketing statistics, around 85% of new hires are made through networking. With that being said, in the current economic climate, networking is a necessity. Personal and professional networks lead to an increase of business advancement opportunities, wider scope of knowledge and an improved capacity to innovate.
If you’re someone who hasn’t hopped on the bandwagon yet, or find it tensing to get social, here’s what you can do to improve your networking skills and get your foot in the door, and stay in;
Be a physical version of your LinkedIn profile. Similar to the functions of a LinkedIn profile, follow and connect with people whose areas of interest or business is one you find relatable or can link you to additional information you may need at one point or another. Consider how your overall goals align with those of people you meet and how that can forge meaningful relationships. Often, we confine ourselves to meeting specific people who match a checklist of our acquired needs however it’s important to note that networking is something we do all the time, whether consciously or not. Hence, be open to interacting with people of varying professions, nationalities, and cultures, this can help one perceive and understand things from a different light, broadening one’s scope of knowledge. When a networking opportunity presents itself, find something valuable to offer by thinking outside the box, this applies even when you do not share common interests.
Here are a few go-to questions you can delve into to break the ice;
What’s the most exciting thing you’ve worked on?
What important changes have you seen at work during this period of time?
Where do you see the future of this industry going, post-pandemic?
What was your biggest takeaway during the pandemic?
Has the pandemic changed the way you think about certain things?
I’m in dire need of a good show to watch, do you have any movie recommendations?
Another viable strategy to building network connections is to embrace saying “yes” more when collaborating with new counterparts within the organization or outside of it. Find opportunities to say “yes” to expand your social and professional footprint, it’s an easy way to get to know people outside of the usual and/or familiar social group. Being proactive can mean complimenting someone’s outfit while waiting at the checkout counter, asking a stranger for the news updates while waiting for the train, small ice breakers like this are all it takes to start a conversation. With that in mind, there isn’t a one size fits all rule, find methods that suit you best for example introverts might prefer conversations over text like through social media, or one-on-one meetings instead of participating in large gatherings. The takeaway from this is also to maintain a pleasant impression with your extended network at all times, one can never know who you’ll cross paths with and when that contact might come in handy.
In today’s world, it’s more crucial than ever to stay relevant, this can be done by establishing a strong online presence and actively engaging in content. During the peak of the pandemic networking let alone getting any social interaction outside of our home we’re close to impossible hence alternative ways to do so is to leverage on social networking. With social media at our fingertips, it’s likely fellow industry connections will look you up online to discover more about your personal and professional interests. To ensure you’re portrayed in the best light, create online boundaries between your professional and personal social media accounts. For business and network building purposes stick to sites such as LinkedIn, and keep your profiles accurate, up-to-date, and complete. Send personalized messages to new connections and ensure the content you publish is cantered towards personal growth, self-care and/or business-related features that are most relevant to the current economic climate. Blog posts, TED talks, and educational articles are things you and your connections can engage with. Over time, engaging with helpful content over time will help your connections see you as a key member of the industry and someone worth knowing, ultimately making expanding your account visibility as well.
Colony provides internally connected work area to fosters interaction with like-minded individuals from varying professions and backgrounds as a breeding ground for networking, to share information and knowledge with fellow co-workers. Spread across multiple locations for serviced office and coworking space across the Klang Valley, flexibility and stability is what comes to mind when serving your needs. You’ll have access to our spaces for work, concierge & mail and parcel handling services, a prestigious address to call your home, and more!
There’s no better time to start than now, with our latest flexible serviced office kl package, where you can save up to 2 months of rent!
Here’s what you get: