“The illiterate of the 21st century will not be those who cannot read and write but those who cannot learn, unlearn, and relearn."
– Alvin Toffler

Networking: Building Professional Relationships

For both job seekers and employers, networking is an opportunity to develop valuable professional relationships. When it comes to building a professional network, Primary Services can assist you. With our years of experience and extensive network, our team members are valuable connections to make and can provide helpful training on how to mingle effectively.

Below are some tips and tools to arm you with the knowledge needed to seize networking opportunities whenever they may arise.

Introducing Yourself

How you present yourself will say more about you than your first words will. This includes your attire, your posture, and the way you walk. Dressing appropriately for the given environment is an important indicator of your professionalism. A neat, polished look is always appropriate.

When you meet a new contact, you want to be friendly and self-assured: give a firm handshake and make eye contact. Before you approach a potential contact, prepare a concise and interesting introduction for yourself. If you are not sure how to describe yourself and your current and future career goals, Primary Services can help you formulate an effective elevator pitch – a 30-second speech that summarizes who you are, what you do and why you’d be a perfect candidate.

Having a Meaningful Conversation

A meaningful conversation is more than an exchange of words; it’s an exchange of ideas, so listen closely to what the other person is saying. Show genuine interest and you will learn more about the person and their business needs. In turn, you may recognize ways in which you can address those needs, or realize it would behoove this person to meet someone else in your network. Providing valuable introductions is a great way to build good will in your new professional relationship.

Remembering your new contact’s name is also important, so repeat the person’s name a few times during the conversation in as natural a manner as possible.

Conclusion and Follow-Up

Before you leave the networking event, make sure to go back and say goodbye to those you would like to stay in touch with. This provides a strong ending for your initial meeting, and is a perfect time to ask them for a business card. When you are handed a card, take a moment to read it so the person can see that you value their information. Also, have business cards of your own on hand in case the new connection asks for one.

The entire purpose of requesting a new contact’s business card is to follow up with them, so make sure you do! Within a few days of your meeting, send them an email, make a quick phone call, or mail some relevant information. Utilize social media by connecting with them on LinkedIn.

Building a Strong Business Network

By making it a point to listen to and follow up with your new contacts, you will be able to quickly build a strong business network based on valuable professional relationships. If you need more tips, Primary Services’ recruiters are a trusted source for networking advice.