Moving back to school each year can be a pain.
Boxes seem to triple, and stairwells feel like Mario’s Endless Stairs. Before long, school starts, tests come, the thought of planning for the future has disappeared and we get caught up in the challenges of daily life.
This is especially true for job searching and resume building.
These are often the first things to be put on the back burner, but that doesn’t have to be the case at all. By choosing to network, job searching and resume building become easier.
Networking does not have to be work; no more than saying “hi” to friends, it can become easy in no time by just making an effort to be noticed and heard.
Start by talking to the different groups of people you know. They don’t have to be deep drawn out conversations.
A quick e-mail can work wonders for keeping you connected.
Making it a point to go to professors’ office hours is a simple yet effective step. Not only will you get help with class questions but professors who know you by name are more often willing to help with things other than tests and homework.
Good relationships with professors can yield recommendation letters or new contacts in the professional world. Many Tech professors are actually interesting; the fifteen-minute change to your schedule will be worth it in more ways than one.
Next, make a list of jobs you like and attempt to network with people in those fields.
This means looking outside of your contacts at the Institute. Do this by going to a career fair. While it is likely that students will vastly outnumber employers, putting forth an effort never hurts.
Look professional, take copies of your resume, dress in nothing less than business casual and do not come back empty handed.
Even if you don’t get a job interview, at least get the employers’ business cards as you never know why you might need to contact them in the future.
Aside from professors and corporations, consider the fact that friends and family are also networks waiting to be tapped. It doesn’t take too much time to call an aunt, uncle or grandma.
The more people that know what job, internship or co-op interests you, the more likely that something will be found.
Also do not forget about friends. While they will not be as excited to hear about your work aspirations, they will try to help.
Don’t forget that CEOs have relatives, and the CEO of a company you love just might be tied to a friend. In this age of social media madness, most top level executives in companies are also on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, etc. Use these platforms as a means of networking.
Simply put, the best advice to networking is being willing to put yourself out there. Knowing and understanding that networking is a way of life and happens every time you meet someone is half the battle won. You are a part of multiple networks; you never know which one you might need to tap into at a given time.
Networking is essential and hopefully you’ll be a master at it in no time. Take this advice to better your networking, and remember the old adage that it is not what you know, but whom you know.