Our esteemed Marketing and Business Development professional, Joy McKenzie (@joyembe) wrote a short post about the value of professional networking:
I believe that professional networking is the number one tool any working person can use to manage their careers today. Whether you are a graphic designer always on the lookout for new clients or a marketer whose maintenance of contacts outside of her organization is essential, a professional can’t exist on her own today and expect to have a long and successful career.
A study published in 2001 by Monica L. Forret (St. Ambrose University) and Thomas W. Dougherty (University of Missouri) suggests that professionals early in their careers (like me) without many contacts in the industry actively seek opportunities for professional networking. This is because younger professionals perceive networking as a way to advance their careers and gain visibility outside of their organizations, whereas those who have already achieved more in their careers may feel they have plateaued and are less likely to benefit from networking.
I would beg to disagree with those veterans. Networking for many people simply involves flipping through their rolodex to find out who can can do something for you, but relationship and networking gurus agree that establishing, and maintaining meaningful contacts – no, friendships – will get you much farther in your professional and personal life, no matter your career status. Too many folks seem to focus on a specific ‘transaction’ or ‘need’ with their approach towards networking.
It seems to me, and to the gurus out there, that it would behoove any professional to broaden and maintain connections all along their career journey. It seems the worst that can happen is a few new friendships and a few extra dollars in business T&E costs, right?
“At every stage of my career, I sought out the most influential people around me and asked for their help and guidance.” –Keith Ferrazzi, Never Eat Alone (@keithferrazzi)
Whatever stage of your career you are in, Quewey.com is here to help you connect. Quewey’s smart little algorithm matches you with a small group of people with similar levels of work and education experience to provide intimate and meaningful professional networking in your city. We hope you’ll check it out, no matter where you are in your career journey.
Forret and Dougherty. (2001). Correlates of networking behavior for managerial and professional employees. Group Organization and Management. 26(3). 283-311