When we’re in networking mode, we tend to think about the future and forget about those who helped us get to where we are now, but getting in touch with old co-workers, bosses, mentors, and former contacts is key. They’re likely in a different place in their careers and have made new connections that you can also tap into. Although sending an email to someone who haven’t spoken to in years can feel forced, don’t be deterred, you’d be surprised how many will be very happy to hear from an old work mate or contact.
School / University Alumni
Don’t forget about alumni organisation. Most alumni networks have events and volunteer activities that are perfect for expanding your contacts list. Don’t forget that at an alumni ‘meet-up’ you’ll at least share one thing in common: where you went to school or University. Use this as a way to bond, and professional opportunities may well come from them; perhaps not immediately but certainly further down the line if you continue to use the Alumni events pages, or meet up info!
Do your research before networking events.
First, to find a networking event, you can check LinkedIn, which has an events section listed on your personal homepage. There you can find happenings near you in a field you’re interested in. Others such as Eventbrite also offer networking events and of course, you can do some research in industry publications as to where events may be happening over the coming year. During lock down, use your time well and get to know how to use LinkedIn and other websites properly. They are fantastic tools, and with such amazing ‘reach’ to people in similar industries and people of interest in other industries, this tool is essential in the current age so play with LinkedIn and get to know the tools you have at hand.