Opportunities to Network in Unexpected Places
Networking is simply the activity of connecting with another person in hopes of finding a new job opportunity. It is one of the key ways to securing new positions, especially those that may not even be posted on job sites yet. There are official networking events through different organizations, but you can network really just about anywhere. Here are a few unexpected places you may be able to use for finding a new job.
While Traveling. Traveling can be an adventure with a lot of “hurry up and wait.” You rush to the airport to catch your flight and then have to sit for hours because your flight is delayed. This downtime is a perfect time to meet some new people. Strike up a conversation with the person sitting next to you in the terminal or go have a drink at the bar. You never know who you might meet or who they might work for.
While Out for Fun. The next time you go out for the evening, keep your eye open for an opportunity to network. It could be as simple as chatting with the person you’re sitting next to at the theatre before the show starts, or striking up a conversation with the group bowling next to you. Work on your small talking skills and it will help you figure out if you can find a networking opportunity with someone new you meet.
While Working Out. The gym is also a good place to keep a lookout for occasions to network. You can start a conversation with someone while you both wait to use the same piece of equipment or talk to some people before your spin class starts. Make sure you mention where you work in your conversation, and ask them what they do for a living too.
While Parenting. School events are an excellent place for you to find networking opportunities. You’re likely surrounded by other parents who are in your peer group and make good contacts for the different companies that are in your area. Come prepared with a few pitches about what you’re looking for and perhaps another parent can open the door to a new job for you.
Bottom line, when you’re wanting to switch companies or look for a new job opportunity all together, you have to look for networking opportunities wherever you find yourself. You could find someone to talk to in line for coffee or even at church. Just keep an eye out and be prepared to give a quick pitch about yourself wherever you venture out during the day or night.
10 Unusual Places for (Successful) Professional Networking