It might sound intimidating and overwhelming, but networking is an important part of a job search. And, believe it or not, you are networking every time you go to work.
Networking is all about actively seeking relationships within nursing that will help you pursue your professional goals. These connections can be formed in person or online. While it may not be on the top of your to-do list, since it can be time-consuming and feel awkward on occasion, it is crucial to your career development.
When networking is done well it will not only help you find and land a job faster, but it gives you a competitive edge over others in the field during every stage of your career. This isn’t just exchanging information with others and certainly not about asking for favors. Rather it’s about establishing a nurturing, mutually beneficial relationship at any time in your day.
The most connected people are often the most successful people. As you invest in the relationships and careers of the people around you, they reciprocate and you both advance. Here are a few more tips to help you get started.
Events can play an important role in meeting and establishing relationships. Nurses gather at convention centers, hospitals or company-sponsored events, often focusing on education, job fairs and social events where like-minded people have a chance to get to know each other and bond. Although it is easy to blend in at these events, it’s important to step outside your comfort zone and establish relationships with new people. This is also a time to meet up with people you may have connected with on LinkedIn or Facebook.
At a natural point in the conversation, be sure to share your passion for what you do and who you are. People are interested in your professional passions, but they connect on a personal level. Ask questions about what others do. This is an easy way to get a conversation started. By listening to the replies you’re going to learn about the other person and have a basis for your response.
Although we do live in a relaxed society, when going to a professional event it’s important to dress professionally. Appearing to be overly casual makes a bad impression and a professional outfit will lend you confidence. After any networking event is over, remember to follow up with the people you make connections with. Networking is about establishing and maintaining relationships, not just meeting someone once and moving on.
Networking happens in everyday life as well. Whether it’s on the job or online, meeting new people who can help in your long-term career plans is just a step away. LinkedIn reports 35% of those they surveyed said a casual conversation on their platform has led to a new job opportunity.
When you’re connecting with people online, remember past or present co-workers or managers as well as alumni from your alma mater. People you know from the church, gym or community organizations may not be practicing nurses, but they also work within a network of professionals.
Your professional development may just be one connection away. At Amare Medical Staffing, it’s our goal to help you make those connections. Call our recruiters today and let’s get started helping you grow your professional network.