Our GlamNERD of the Month ChiChiPharm D is back to shed some light on a skill we all need to master. Networking. Get into her!
“Its’ not just about who you know, its’ about who knows YOU!!”
What’s goin’ on fellow GlamNERDs!! I know that this is a topic that has been touched on before, but since it’s’ something that you will always come across in life, I felt it’s necessary to address again. Be it social or professional, you will find that this will come knockin’ on your door more often than not. Yes, you guessed it; I’m talking about the beauty of NETWORKING!!
While you each embark on your individual paths towards greatness, you will most definitely meet a vast array of people, some you may consider important and others not so much so. Quite frankly, in my opinion there is no difference between the two. You never know who a person is, or what kind of impact they will have on your life until you open your mouth or return that handshake! As someone who is dangerously shy, I at times (and often still do) struggle with stepping out of my shell and sparking conversation. But you’ll find that once you start, the fun don’t stop. It’ll get easier, more natural, and most importantly exciting, as you never know who you may meet.
I’m sure you’re now thinking, networking may be where it’s at but how do I make my way in the game? And to that I would say, the easiest and quickest way to get your feet wet is by GETTING INVOLVED in just about anything (as long as it’s of interest to you). Whether it’s a student organization, church group, or social organization, all you have to do is sign up! Get a feel for the organization’s (org’s) missions or goals, and if it is something that really speaks to you than try to become more active. You could possibly even take on a leadership role. This is the perfect opportunity to practice your networking/people skills with other group members whom you may or may not know as well other people/groups that your organization may work with.
As you get more and more attached to whatever your role is, you’ll find that you’ll start reppin’ your org so hard that someone will have to take notice. Guess what?!? This, my dears, is otherwise known as networking! As you actively work with your organization, all that you’re doing is sharing your interests with another person. Being involved in any type of org allows you do this, to the point that you will eventually become a pro! With this skill you will have easy access to a plethora of resources, or even better, become a resource to someone else. Yea, Google may be a tad bit more precise, but its’ definitely not as fun as going through your mental rolodex for that person who might have the answer to your question or the ability to meet your needs.
Even though it’s the most common route to take, you shouldn’t limit yourself to just “networking” with colleagues or classmates. Family and friends count as your network too, so use them! I’m sure that not everyone in your crew is pursuing the same career that you are. Take advantage of that! Take the time to go to their birthday soirees, office parties, or luncheons to get to know the other circles they roll in. Personally family and friends functions are the easiest scenes to network in because you don’t have to be the one to do that awkward first introduction. Everyone will remember you, especially if you are closely related to the host/hostess, and you won’t feel as nervous sparking convo because you’ll be in a room full of heads that you most likely will never cross paths with again aka you ain’t got nothin’ to lose!!!
People always say its’ all about who you know, but I say its’ about who knows you. You don’t want to be that person who’s added on BBM just for the sake of increasing contacts. Nor do you want be that nine hundred and ninety-ninth facebook friend that never gets a wall post or event invite. Once you start nurturing and practicing your networking skills, people will start to remember more than just your face. They’ll remember your personality, your spirit, and most importantly your talents! So the next time you feel like you’ve been dumped in a strange and unfamiliar place, shake it off and talk to someone cause you never know who you might meet, who can get you the hook up, or who you can put on!
Peace & Blessings