Learning & Development | July 25, 2018
EBSCO Corporate Solutions has compiled a list of professional networking tips for new graduates, courtesy of corporate learning tool Accel5™.
As a new graduate entering the workforce, it is critical that you begin your career with a network of people invested in your success. Forming these relationships will help you to decide on the type of career you want and create a plan to make your ideas a reality. By working with experienced professionals, you will develop soft skills necessary to thrive in any workplace.
The first step to creating your professional network is to connect with people who can help you to accomplish your career dreams. As a young graduate, this may require some research. To begin, create a list of potential mentors. Your first step should be looking back on people you’ve already worked with, whether they were your college professor or your manager at an internship. From there, attend any networking opportunities in your field of interest that will help you to expand your list. Finally, utilize the internet and social media (particularly LinkedIn) to find individuals that you admire professionally.
Once you’ve drafted a list of potential network members, you must create a plan for contacting these people. Remember that not everyone has the time or interest to be a great mentor, so don’t take any negative responses (or lack of responses) personally.
In the business book summary for Reach Out, courtesy of EBSCO Corporate Solutions’ Accel5, author Molly Beck offers tips for your initial correspondence. She advises that each “reach out” should include a compliment as well as a “gift.” A gift can include an article or book recommendation, specific and useful knowledge, a publicity opportunity or free advice regarding a beneficial skill you possess. These gifts are useful as people generally feel more compelled to respond when they have been offered something.
By working with experienced professionals, you will develop skills necessary to thrive in any workplace.
Expand your further network by identifying additional individuals that can drive your career success. In Accel5’s business book summary for It’s Who You Know, author Janine Garner explains how you can get on the fast track for personal and professional success by strategically developing and expanding your network. To do this, Garner recommends that you seek out 12 people that fall into the following categories:
It is important to remember that is it the responsibility of the mentee, not the mentor, to create and foster a beneficial relationship. In an exclusive video for Accel5, communications expert Lee Caraher shares a seven-step process for finding a great mentor and creating the ideal mentor-mentee relationship. Her tips include defining what you want out of a mentorship, identifying the right person to ask to be your mentor, approaching the person you've identified with a specific request; respecting your mentors time, being intentional and proactive, protecting your mentor and remembering that your mentor is not your parent.
Once you’ve found a mentor, Caraher recommends that you remember the following:
By creating and nurturing professional relationships, you will have a guide that will be invaluable throughout your early career. With these tips, you will find the right people to help you create a plan to succeed in both your personal and professional life.
For more exclusive content on critical soft skills such as mentoring, professional development, and more, request a free trial of EBSCO’s Accel5. This corporate learning tool features business book summaries, videos and articles from top thought leaders that will help all employees learn and thrive – from new graduates to seasoned professionals.
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