Allora Collective

The Power of Personalized Networking

When people are interested in transitioning to a new industry or a new role, my advice is to network using a personalized strategy that is intentional. 

I’ll admit, I’m an extrovert and enjoy making connections with others. But networking did not come naturally for me, I’ve developed my communication skills through my life experiences. Many of my career roles consisted of building partnerships with organizations or connecting with prospective candidates. My day-to-day tasks involved reaching out to companies and HR managers and learning more about their hiring process. As a recruiter, I was focused on learning about candidates and referring them to opportunities.  Additionally, I’m also a parent of a neurodiverse teen, and advocating on his behalf involved numerous conversations with school staff and healthcare professionals. 

One of my specialties is helping clients create a networking strategy that aligns with their values and personality.I’m sharing my go-tos that have helped me solidify my existing connection or create new connections :

  1. Focus on quality over quantity of connections It’s not a competition. Great professional relationships happen because you invest the time and effort to meet new people who you share interests and values with. Begin carving out time in your week, so that you can have in-person or virtual conversation with new connections. I build time in my calendar for 1:1 networking. Some weeks, I set aside 5 hours, while other weeks I allocate just 1 hour. 

  2. Be specific about why you are reaching out 
  3. When you identify a person to connect with, consider what specifically drew you to them. Do you have a colleague you both know, are they in a role or company you want to work for, or is there a specific part of their career journey that you identify with? The more specific you are, the better they will understand how they can assist you. Think about what you can learn from this person, versus if their company is hiring. 

    For example, making a career pivot, and you come across a connection that’s in your industry and in the industry your interested send the following message:
    “Hi Jane, I’m in higher education and considering a pivot to EdTech. I noticed that you were also once in higher education and successfully transitioned to [role] at [company]. I’d like to learn more about your journey and any suggestions you can share for translating my higher education experience when networking and interviewing. Are you open to a brief conversation? If not, anything you can share in a reply would be appreciated”

  4. Give new connections time to get back to you 
  5. Generally, our team recommends following up within 3-5 days until you hear a response. But depending on a new connention’s role, they may not get back to you immediately be patient. Keep an open mind and don’t assume that they don’t want to connect with you.   This person may have a busy work week or personal life, they may be a parent, managing multiple inboxes or balancing other responsibilities outside of work.Remember, networking is a continuous process, and you can always make room to connect a month or even three months down the line.

If you are interested in switching careers or industries, my recommendation is to intentionally network using personalized strategies. In my next blog, I’ll share how you can start to build new connections! If you need help with creating a networking strategy, schedule a call with my coaching collective – Allora Collective.

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