The Importance of Networking in a Tough Economy

Our current economic state presents us with many opportunities – it’s all about how you choose to look at it. My focus has always been on the basics; taking a moment to look at your foundation with an emphasis on finances. Regardless of where you look, it is all about relationships – your relationship with your money, bank, employer, family, and friends.

This brings me to the importance of networking, and the value of forming and maintaining a strong circle of contacts. There is no better time than now to strengthen or build your network. A solid network will serve you well for years to come and will be an additional tool in your toolbox especially during these times of economic uncertainty.

Networking includes both internal and external activity. Internally, be visible at your current job – don’t hide in your office or cubicle. Volunteer for projects and make yourself available. Expand your lunch partners. Meet and talk with new coworkers and continue to communicate with them on a regular basis. Be informed; know where your company is going. You may want to consider brushing-up your skills or broadening your knowledge which leads me to external networking. This can also enhance your current situation. An easy way to do this is by joining a professional organization within your field. Network by regularly attending the meetings, meeting new people, and benefiting from the information and knowledge presented through seminars and speakers.

Keep in mind that networking is not easy for most and can even be painful.

Tip: To help ease your apprehension, consider arriving early at a meeting when there are fewer people or invite a colleague to attend with you. Then, take your membership to the next level by becoming a board member or chairing a committee. This opens many new doors and looks good on your resume.

Also, consider joining an online professional network such as LinkedIn. You can add your professional memberships/organizations to your profile for added visibility. Invite your contacts to join and continue expanding your network with updated information.

Final tips: always exchange contact information or business cards and follow-up. Start and maintain a database of the contacts in your network that includes their name, email address, phone number, as well as how, when, and where you met with any additional, pertinent notes to help jar both your memory as well as your contact’s memory. Continue adding to this database and make it a point to keep in touch with any appropriate news or pass along an article of interest.

It is all about relationships. Build them and keep them strong. Working together is much easier than going it alone.

The Importance of Social Networking in Our Society

Time flies quickly, a few years ago people tend to communicate using wired gadgets such as telephones or ham radios. Today, the internet has reshaped our world beyond our imagination. People now uses desktop or laptop computers not just for work but also for entertainment and communication as well.

Part of the ever growing popularity of the world wide web as a new means of communication is the advent of social networking sites. These are proprietary websites that can be used by common people to post personal profiles, pictures, videos, music and messages. Users of social networking sites can invite other “friends” to join their network to be able to view and share personal information on one another.

There are several social networking sites today, among the popular ones are Facebook, MySpace and Twitter. Most members of these sites are teenagers who just love the company of friends and other people. However, did you know how important social networking sites are?

1. Keeping in touch

By maintaining a profile on these sites, your loved ones, friends and distant relatives don’t have to call you every time just to stay in touch with one another. One can take advantage of posting messages, images and personal videos of themselves for their loved ones to see over and over again. It’s cheap, fast and real time technology available to everyone.

2. Job hunting

Several companies in the US and Europe are taking advantage of social networking sites to get competent employees. On the other hand, job applicants take advantage of these sites to post their resume and credentials. It’s a great tool one can use in order to make a good impression to a company. If you’re applying for a computer related job, it would be great to maintain a personal profile.

3. Emergency

Have you heard of several thousands of individuals saved using social networking sites? Twitter has been a great tool for many to relay messages to thousands of concerned citizens in a snap in times of tragedy and natural calamities. People who seek fund raising and donation can use Facebook or MySpace sites to call unto generous individuals.

Many people consider these sites as a work of the devil. It could be. However, one must realize that anything can become good or bad depending on the person’s intentions. Social networking sites has shaped our world whether we like it or not and it will become an indispensable tool if it’s used for good purposes.