One of the best things you can do for yourself and your career is to surround yourself with supportive, inspiring people. Having a tribe who can bring out the best in you, and help you get to where you want to go, is one of the most valuable investments you can make, both on a professional and personal level.
There are many ways you can reach out and meet people; it all comes down to the power of networking. In this day and age, your ability to mingle with the best of them can have profound consequences on your success and happiness.
We spoke to some of the Mamamia staff about how to improve your networking skills and create meaningful, supportive relationships within your industry.
Kate de Brito – Editor.
Networking is an essential part of any job. It’s not only about helping you spot career opportunities but also about building relationships that can support you in your job and in achieving your goals.
Tip 1: Take the first step. You can’t build an impressive contact book and good relationships in a day. Start small and don’t expect to have immediate success. The more you work at developing and maintaining relationships the stronger they will become.
Tip 2: Work out what you need. Before you head into a situation, ask yourself what you want. Mentoring, advice, feedback on your industry, good contacts, a new job? Know what you are looking for before you begin. Different situations and different people can foster different outcomes.
"Networking is an essential part of any job." Image: supplied.
Mia Freedman - Co-founder and Creative Director.
The word 'networking' makes me shudder involuntarily. It sounds so insincere even though I understand its value. I make a habit of reaching out to congratulate other women on promotions or new jobs. I also, instinctively, always reach out to support a woman who is in the firing line of social media outrage or a nasty media story because I know what that's like and it can feel horribly lonely.
I'm very much led by my gut and my emotions on this. The worst thing you can do is ask someone more senior than you, who you don't know, to "go for coffee". Nobody has time for coffee.