Networking: Building Strong Relationships in the Workplace
In our increasingly technological world, networking is becoming a matter of course for most career-coaching gurus. Indeed, having good relationships with your co-workers and old bosses can make a big difference in getting a promotion or getting that new job you applied for. While it does not always come down to who knows who, it will almost always come down to who can perform well. This is where having good recommendations become the result of good relationships. With large-scale platforms such as LinkedIn, it can seem like you need a lot of contacts in your network base. Otherwise, you may not get the visibility you need; but there are also real world connections you can make that will help you get more business, or better jobs. With so much depending on networking, it can feel downright scary and intimidating. However, there are some simple things you can do that make networking less painful.
Making Connections Through Networking
The first step you can take toward making a connection is chatting. Yes, it can be that simple! The type of chatting you do of course is what you need to consider. Most career-coaching advice will warn you against small talk. This is sound advice, as talking about the weather can become background noise to most people. As a result you may become forgettable to your employers. Instead try discussing work related issues. For example: an account they are working on, something new you are trying, something new they are trying. Making yourself available to ping ideas off of can help endear you to them. While you are doing this, be sure to remember that the goal is not to make ‘friends’ per se, but to build good working relationships. This means showing genuine interest in your co-workers by asking questions and taking time to get to know them.
Creating a good track record with your boss is more then doing a good job: It is also following up on your job. For example, if your position puts you in charge of purchasing then at the very minimum there should be little to no shortages of product. A way to build rapport in that position would be to make suggestions for product, or even creating charts showcasing distribution flow. Essentially, you make sure the job gets done, and then go a little further. This can look like quality employee reviews, word of mouth, or beating quarterly expectations. It also means that you can handle most issues directly. Managing a crisis can be hard, but if you can do it well then your boss will trust you more with the next one. This helps make an impression on your employers and helps build your networking.
Networking can be as easy as emailing your co-workers. Regardless of the type of email you need to send, it is always an opportunity to build rapport. How you sound in writing helps set a tone for your work and gives an impression of you as a person. As such, you want to sound mature and competent. Work appropriate language helps you accomplish this, as well as show your knowledge and expertise in the field. Emails can always set the tone asreminders of the kind of employee or boss you are. Often, people will refer your characterwhen asked about the kind of employee you are.
Networking can be the scariest and most daunting aspect of the career coaching advice you receive, but it doesn’t have to be. You can do a few simple things to help establish your work persona and showcase your unique skill set. All it really takes is a little time and a willingness to learn.