Many professionals aren’t likely to actively think about networking on a day-to-day basis, however, it can be the key to helping you in any future job prospects you may have. It’s important to keep in contact with a wide range of people throughout your career and especially at the beginning. The contacts you make at the beginning of your career, may very well stay with you until the end. You can network in which ever way suits you best. It’s possible through your social media pages – if they portray you in the desired way. You can network over email or the phone, or in person with your colleagues. Networking allows professionals to branch out and talk to people they might not usually have easy access too.
One of the most beneficial ways to professionally network right now, is by using your LinkedIn account. If you currently don’t have access to an account, make one. By using this platform, you can find people from your current company, professionals from other companies, recruiters or anyone you may find interesting. It’s a great and easy way to share news, industry information and to talk to other engineers like yourself – learning from one another is a great aspect of LinkedIn. You can update your LinkedIn with your career history and experience that people may find useful in an employee. This platform can be treated like a compact version of your CV, it may just get you noticed. LinkedIn also offers the option to join groups where they may post jobs, news articles and generally keep you updated on events. Click here to join E&T Jobs LinkedIn group.
Industry events can be a great place to find like-minded professionals in your field. Events will often consist of seminars, panels of engineering professionals and a lot of time to talk to colleagues and potential future employers. These events are created so that people can take some time to learn more about their chosen industry and so companies can find potential employees. You all chose to be there and talking to new people can help you in your own career. It can reassure you that you have chosen the correct route for yourself and can be incredibly inspiring when you talk to other individuals that have the same passion you do about your field. Talking to new professionals can result in you finding something new you may want to explore, creating new ideas and potential job routes.
When we love our jobs, we can tend to get a little caught up in the moment. We forget to go out and speak to other people. In engineering sparking creativity can be important, making sure you are always thinking on your feet and coming up with new ideas. By putting yourself out there and reminding yourself of the talent you have, talking to new people will boost your confidence, maybe even help you trigger a new idea. Engineering can be a lonely sector to work in, make sure you get out there. If the event is relevant, your company may even fund the event. Take advantage of all the benefits your job offers.
Networking in your current job is very important. Especially if you work in a big team of people, there may always be someone new to talk to. This is the same as talking to new people at events. You spend most days with these people, engaging with their interests and ideas can benefit both of you and happy conversation always makes the day better.
Networking at work doesn’t only mean your colleagues, but potential new clients at work. This doesn’t have to be prioritised every day, as an engineer, your job may be a little too demanding some days, but make sure you are putting in the effort. Finding new clients can be done via email or over the phone, you don’t necessarily have to go out and get it. But this will help you in the long run.
Family and Friends
This may be a simple one but being able to keep a strong line of communication with the people that are most important to you will help keep you motivated. Most people can get caught up in their career and forget to spend a decent amount of time with their family or friends. This keeps you grounded and happy. They are the people backing you the most, you will see endless advantages in taking this time for yourself and loved ones. This unquestionably counts as networking.
Networking can help your career in a large handful of ways. Don’t be mistaken in thinking that you only need to vigilantly network when you are looking for a new job. If you do this from the very beginning of your career, you would have built a strong network of engineers. A network of people is for both parties, hopefully they will help you and you can help them in return. That way, when you may need to hire someone, the process may be easier. Or the other way around, when you are looking for a new path, you may know people that are hiring or training. Either way, there are only benefits from networking and it’s never too late to start. Take the time to attend relevant events, use your LinkedIn page to talk and share news and generally keep yourself active in the engineering community. You will be noticed and when you need the help, it will hopefully be right there waiting.