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Does Networking Really Work?

Mar 21, 2024 05:14 PM

To answer this quickly, YES. 

And, according to HubSpot, 85% of jobs are filled through networking.

But, similar to just about everything else, the results very much depend on the effort you put it. 

Build those relationships

As someone who just started taking networking seriously this year, I can confidently confirm that networking makes a difference. It has opened doors for me, mostly leading to job interviews for positions that were never even posted. 

Networking goes beyond merely connecting with others for job opportunities. It is about building meaningful relationships in your industry, meeting mentors, and gaining insights from experienced professionals. Through networking, I have been able to tap into so much knowledge and expertise that has significantly contributed to my personal and professional growth.

Networking isn’t the only answer

Networking isn’t the only pathway to success. I recently secured a new job without relying on networking connections. This experience reminded me that while networking can be powerful and provide great opportunities, it is not the be-all and end-all of job searching. 

While networking may not have directly led me to securing this specific job, it has been an essential part of my personal journey. Through networking, I have had the privilege of meeting and learning from mentors who have provided invaluable guidance and advice. Their insights have helped me navigate this new industry more effectively and most importantly, make informed career decisions. 

Building a strong network is essential, but equally important is honing your skills, staying updated with industry trends, and seizing opportunities as they come. Networking complements your efforts and enhances your chances of success, but it is not a shortcut to achieving your goals.

You get what you put in

Getting the most out of networking takes effort, and it’s important to connect with the right people. Just having a broad network does not ensure success; it’s important to establish lasting relationships with individuals who can provide valuable mentoring, insights, knowledge, and support.

Building a strong network requires actively seeking out individuals who share your interests, passions, and career aspirations. Attend industry-specific events, reach out to professionals via social media, and engage with them in meaningful conversations. Make an effort to follow up with your new contacts periodically and find ways to offer genuine help and support to them in return.

Remember - networking is not just about what you can get out of it, it’s a two-way street. Networking should not be seen as something transactional. Instead, it's a great way to establish trust and create a supportive professional community. 

Final Thoughts

Networking is an important component of career development, serving as a great way to grow, learn, build a supportive community within your field. Embrace networking not only for the immediate benefits it brings but also for the long-term relationships and insights that can potentially shape your professional journey. Remember, networking isn’t just the connections you make, it’s the opportunities and knowledge that come from it. 

Networking does work. I encourage you all to get out there and start networking - you never know what opportunities it might bring you.