Useful Professional Networking?

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Useful Professional Networking?
Chloe Xu, Consultant, Australia

Despite the fact that social networking is all around, many business people find networking activities distasteful and avoid them even if it can contribute to job and business opportunities, broader and deeper knowledge, and improved capacity of innovation and advancement. Here are some tips to help you overcome an aversion to professional networking:
  • FOCUS ON LEARNING. Focus on the positive growth, advancement, and accomplishments that networking can bring and the activities will begin to seem much more worthwhile.
  • IDENTIFY COMMON INTERESTS. Social psychological studies have proved that when people work together on tasks that require one anotherís contribution, they are able to establish the most long-term and collaborative connections. So it is useful to think about how your interests and goals align with those who you meet in networking and how that can help you build meaningful working relations. Common interest identified through serious research often works well on leading to qualified relationships as it will feel more authentic and meaningful.
  • THINK BROADLY ABOUT WHAT YOU CAN GIVE. It is true that when people believe they have a lot to offer, such as advice, mentorship, access, and resources, networking feels easier for them. But even those with lower rank and lower power can have many more resources than they can think of, such as heartfelt gratitude, understanding of otherís values and identities, or unique insights or knowledge.
  • FIND A HIGH POSITION. The primary purpose you have in mind determines your effectiveness at networking. As any work activity becomes more attractive when itís linked to a high goal, finding the underlying meaning and joining the activity with that in mind will be easier for you.
Source: Casciaro, T., Gino, F. and Kouchaki, M. (2016). Learn to Love Networking. Harvard Business Review, 94 (May), pp.104 - 107. 12-11-2016



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