You may have heard million times that the best way to create job opportunities is through the professional network. But in order to network, you need to have people to network with and depending on your situation; these people may be in short supply.
Your network is your net worth.
One of the most important networking secret is to meet people and create meaningful connections. But just meeting new people is not enough; you need to develop these professional relationships overtime by engaging them overtime.
Following are the few ways to nurture your professional relationships:
Send congratulatory notes:
You just make a new connection and forget, you need to send congratulatory notes when a connection is promoted or changes professions. It is an opportunity for you to provide an update on your own status as well.
Let appropriate people know what’s new:
When it comes to making professional relationships, you must provide the professional lead. This means that when you hear something new, let the appropriate people in your network become aware of it.
Hand written notes:
In today’s world, everything has become electronic and people don’t give much attention to introductory emails. Therefore, hand write notes and mail them in order to get someone’s attention. If you have finished a book and liked it, send it to the person you think will like it too along with a note explaining why you want them to read it too.
Take advantage of other people’s knowledge:
When you have contacts in your network, you should take the advantage of their knowledge and experience. Reach out to people when you are in need and your contacts will assist you in many ways. Never forget to say thanks to the people who helped you and always be ready to help them when they are in need.
It is okay to stay connected on the social media but for developing stronger connection, you must meet contacts in person. Try and plan meet ups whenever you think you are at the same place or can travel to their place.
Send personalize links:
There is a common habit of sending links as they are but if you personalize those links, they will be given more attention by the contacts you send them to. Whenever you send a link, explain why you think it is useful for the other person.
Don’t forget to re-introduce:
Being connected on LinkedIn with so many people often makes it hard to remember everyone. Therefore, periodic network housekeeping and reach out to those contacts that you think can be helpful for you. Reintroduce yourself and become interested in what’s new with them.