5 simple ways to start networking and why you should

5 simple ways to start networking and why you should
SEEK content teamupdated on 11 July, 2023

Networking doesn’t have to be uncomfortable, although the idea of it can feel uneasy or unnatural to many of us. Maybe networking makes you think of awkward small talk with people you don’t really know.

In fact, research for SEEK has found 38% of people say they don’t take part in networking because it makes them uncomfortable or nervous.

But networking is really about building relationships with people who share your professional interests. And the benefits go beyond that – 67% of employers say they’d be more likely to hire someone who’s been referred by their professional or personal network.

Despite this, 62% of Australian workers are not actively engaged in networking activities – though they’re still open to the idea of it.

Whether online or offline, networking is something we should all try. Here are 5 simple ways to start networking:

Start with what interests you. Interested in AI? Or are you passionate about small business? Figure out what you’re interested in and find events where you can connect with like-minded people.

Take an approach you’re comfortable with. Pick an environment that puts you at ease – whether that’s in person or online. You’ll be more likely to engage with both the content and other attendees

Be curious. Being genuinely interested in other people’s ideas and experiences will not only help you make a good impression and connect with others, but it can also lead to long-lasting connections.

It’s a two-way street. Networking is reciprocal. If someone reaches out to you, consider how you can help or who you can refer them to in your network.

Follow up and keep in touch. Make sure you swap contact details. Stay in touch by attending similar future events or by simply reaching out to check-in.

Essentially, networking can provide opportunities and open doors that you may not have considered. It can also give you a confidence boost when you do start looking for a new role or new opportunity. So, if you haven’t started yet, try some of these steps and find a way to make networking work for you.

Independent research conducted by Nature of behalf of SEEK, interviewing 4800 Australians annually. Published July 2023.

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