Although the COVID-19 pandemic is nowhere near over, we are slowly starting to see a shift towards what we dare to call “normal life.” The pandemic has increased unemployment to a record high and has impacted many businesses. This not only means many people are out of work but also that all they have to finds new ways to network and re-enter the job market.
Gone are the days of firm handshakes and in-person networking events. But although meeting others in-person has essentially become obsolete, networking has remained important to career building. So here is some advice for effective networking in our new normal world:
Be Genuine: Maintaining connections during this time can be difficult while everyone is dealing with their pandemic-related struggles. Therefore, it is especially important to acknowledge that things have changed and that many people have had to endure great losses. Approach communication with sincerity, and with the aim to check-in rather than solely for personal gain. Approaching networking with primarily self-serving motivations often does not breed success. At this moment, showing empathy is of utmost importance.
Expand Your Network: Online communication is now the norm. This means you have the opportunity to connect with people in different locations now that technology allows us to overcome the constrictions of time and space. Join groups and meet-ups to expand your circle and have a greater diversity of opportunities, learn new ways of thinking, and connect with a larger group of influencers.
Simply put: Don’t be afraid to talk to strangers!
Turn to technology: Since networking events cannot be held in person, it is crucial to stimulate an in-person environment as much as possible. For example, swap phone calls and telephone meetings with video chats. By this point, we are all experts at Zoom. You may not be able to meet in person but seeing the expressions and mannerisms of others fosters more fruitful communication. Platforms such as Virbella or Hopin allow for some online networking fun and learning.
In the same regard, a strong, tailored online presence is even more essential since communication has quickly shifted to online platforms almost exclusively. Check out our blog post on updating your LinkedIn to learn more about curating the perfect online profile.
Breakout of social media/ LinkedIn: Although seemingly contradictory to the previous piece of advice, online networking is not limited to social media and online job boards. Online courses are covering a diversity of topics, and groups to join with like-minded people, provide new networking opportunities. Have a mindset for expanding your horizons and meet new people. Because you are approaching networking with greater sincerity, you will make real connections and foster genuine relationships with people who will want to support your career.
Reconnect with your recruiter: If it has been a while since you last connected with your recruiter, be sure to get back in touch with your updated resume and portfolio and follow their LI page for updated access on new jobs. Join us here for Artisan’s LI page.
Good luck to you on your job search.
We hope you’ve enjoyed the 569th issue of our a.blog.