Creating a Web of Professional Contacts

September 30th, 2013 | Articles, Job Search | No Comments »

networking people
One of the most powerful weapons any job seeker has in his or her arsenal is a sturdy web of professional contacts spun through constant engagement within a particular industry.  Just like anything in life, tackling challenges alone is never as good as taking on adversity with the full support of many allies.

The list of professional contacts you can amass through networking is like a web that spans further than you can imagine.  Knowing the right person can open you up to important industry contacts and may even open up a path to that elusive job you have been looking for.

So how do you create a comprehensive web of professional contacts and references?  It is all about seeing opportunities in any situation.  The more you immerse yourself in different activities, the more people you will be able to meet.

Alumni Associations

These organizations are a great and often untapped resource for job seekers.  However this doesn’t mean that you should just pull out your alumni card in hopes that someone who shares your alma mater will just pull any and all strings to get you the job.  Instead this is a great place for you to talk to people who are already veterans in your desired industry.

Hackathons & Contests

Is there a better place to meet people in the IT industry than at hackathons and coding contests?  These places are filled with people just like you who are out to master their craft and meet people within the industry.  A simple online search can lead you to a variety of events that are held several times a year right in your neighborhood.  Better yet, take a trip to another city, see the sights, attend the events, and make valuable contacts all across the country.  Should you wish to relocate for a job, these professional contacts can be your foot in the door.

Social Media

This is the digital age after all.  Sites like Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter are filled with industry professionals looking to make connections with other professionals.  Making a diverse web of contacts by participating in online discussions, publishing industry articles, and sharing your stories with other is as easy as clicking a mouse.

Charity & Volunteering Events

If you choose to spend your time giving back to the community then these events too can be a great place to network.  Charity events bring in people from all walks of life and you are bound to meet someone in the same field as you.

Just remember that every professional contact you make can and will connect you to several more.  In time, you will have a comprehensive web that will open up valuable resources and references.

By Kevin Withers

Image courtesy of jairoagua via Flickr