The first thing you do when you get back to the office? Jump onto LinkedIn and start sending connection requests, of course.
Unfortunately, that’s where most people’s interactions die a lonely death… and you become a one-hit wonder.
Networking means more than just exchanging contact information. It’s about sharing ideas. Asking for advice. Posing questions for community problem solving. Building common experiences.
But if you simply just enter in the person’s info on LinkedIn then toss their card into the recycle bin before calling it good, you’ve just thrown out a huge opportunity.
LinkedIn and other networking sites, or platforms, are not just simply data storage areas in the cloud. They are powerful connectors, if you do it right.
And to help you do just that, here are 15 ways to make sure you don’t become a networking one-hit wonder:
- Follow up on the conference and reference one thing from your conversation at the conference
- Share an interesting article relevant to their interests or your common ones
- Mention an article in which they, or their company, is featured
- Ask their opinion on something relevant (like their career choices)
- Congratulate them on a workplace anniversary or job change
- Quote a recent post by them, and then share the link with your network
- Comment on their posts… and extend the conversation by asking a deep dive questions
- If they are local, ask them to coffee or lunch
- If they are too far away for a drink or meal, ask them to Skype
- If you are traveling to their city, see if they want to meet up
- If you share a common organization, ping them to see if they are attending that group’s next big event
- Make introductions and forward them business opportunities
- Refer like-minded people as potential connections
- Ask how you might help them
- Annually, send a note expressing your gratitude for the connection
These are just 15 ways to stay in touch. There are many more, of course. Pick one or two that work well for you… and then make networking magic happen!
For this post, YouTern thanks our friends at Pathfinder Writing and Career Services!
About the Author: Dawn Rasmussen, CMP is President of Pathfinder Writing and Career Services, a provider of results-oriented résumé, cover letter, and job search coaching services. Dawn is also the official “Get the Job” columnist for One+ Magazine distributed to over 26,000 meeting professionals worldwide and Talentzoo.com, a job resource site for creative and marketing professionals. Dawn is also a recognized career expert on Careerealism.com – a top 10 world-ranked career advice blog – and a regular contributor to TalentCulture.com’s #TChat. Follow Dawn on Twitter!