The idea of building a network seems long, time-consuming, and incredibly draining. After all, not many people have the time to go to coffee meeting after coffee meeting or attend industry conferences on top of a full workload.
The good news, though, is that networking can be quicker and easier than you’re making it out to be. Growing your network only takes a little bit of extra effort during the week. If you need some help getting started, check out these suggestions.
- Do an introduction swap: In exchange for connecting a friend to one of your contacts, your friend will do the same with one of his or hers. (Forbes)
- Building on the idea of the introduction swap, never underestimate the power of doing smaller favors for other people. It’s a quick way to build a reputation and (ultimately) a network. (Lifehacker)
- Finding common ground with new connections can be daunting. One group that might be easier (and faster) to approach? Alumni. (LinkedIn)
- You might feel like you know everyone on LinkedIn, but with just a few short messages and a couple of clicks, you can start working on those valuable second degree connections. (Job Jenny)
- If you prefer to meet people virtually (or just feel way too drained to go to an in-person networking event), hit up a Twitter chat and start connecting with like-minded people. (Buffer)
- Social media is a great way to connect with people, and even Instagram can make for an awesome networking tool. (The Huffington Post)
- Nourishing and growing your network starts in your own office. Go to lunch with co-workers and make sure you get to know them well, too. (Examiner)
- This tip takes a little bit more planning, but it’s definitely worth it: Attend a speed networking event! (Fast Company)
- One of our writers increased her LinkedIn profile views by 425% just by writing a couple of insightful comments on groups. How’s that for simple? (The Daily Muse)
Photo of watering can courtesy of Shutterstock.