Online networking is an excellent way to connect with and follow people who can advise you and help advance your career. If you are clear and concise about what you want, and become an active participant who shares in the conversational give and take, your online network will be the springboard to lifelong mentoring relationships.
LinkedIn remains the premier global social platform for making and developing business relationships. Connect to your mentor on LinkedIn, as a stepping stone to a face-to-face meeting.
- If your mentor is in another city or state, see if you can meet at an upcoming conference or event. Or, set up a Google Hangout or Skype conversation. Take ample time to prepare and to know exactly what you want from the meeting. This way, you’ll make a strong first impression.
Although many people use Twitter as a broadcast medium, it works best for your career when you utilize it conversationally.
- Capture someone’s attention by mentioning their handle in your tweet. A mention is an update that contains “@username” somewhere in a tweet. Reply to your desired contact or take it a step further by directly tweeting at the person to initiate a conversation. Start small, with something like, “Excellent presentation. Thanks for sharing,” before you make a specific request.
- Use hashtags. Clicking on a hashtag will show you all the other tweets marked with that word or phrase. You can save your search to follow topics of interest over time. This is useful because many business leaders have created relevant hashtags for their communities to follow. Twitter chats also use hashtags to record or supplement their events’ activities. You can join a conversation by using the same hashtag — and discover new people, information and contacts, as well.
Join Facebook or LinkedIn Groups
Facebook and LinkedIn groups differ from pages, as they are more about conversations and community. They often are closed or invitation only – but not always, so be sure to familiarize yourself with their privacy settings before you post.
- You often find more intimate and honest conversations in Facebook and LinkedIn groups. Typically, participants are willing and eager to help fellow group members.
Research meetups in your geographic area. Reach out to the organizers using the “contact” button on the group’s home page. They are likely to be well connected and can introduce you to appropriate people. Be sure to follow up by attending an event and solidifying relationships in person.
Finding and building relationships with your career mentors is a key step in your overall job search strategy. For additional tips and resources on fine-tuning your process for success, read our related posts or contact the specialized recruiters at PrideStaff Fresno today.