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Professional Networking: A Guide on What to Do Before, During and After

Did you know that 70% of jobs can be found via your own network, with 24% of those jobs not even officially posted for applicants yet?

Why network?

Networking is a great way to get insights into your desired company’s culture, hiring practices, business challenges and trends. You might also end up with a referral to a job opening!

How to prepare for networking?

Before networking:

  • Be clear on your objective
  • Stay informed on the industry’s upcoming events and activities
  • Prepare a list of questions that you would like to ask during the networking session
  • Prepare a 30-45 second pitch about yourself
  • Prepare a business card with a visual resumé that summarises your qualities

During networking:

  • Keep your attire professional
  • Greet with a firm handshake and maintain eye contact
  • Listen 80% of the time, and speak 20%
  • Ask open-ended questions to gain relevant information
  • Be respectful of their time and keep conversations to about 10 – 15 minutes
  • Thank the person and send a follow-up message

Asking the right networking questions

  • What made you join the company?
  • What’s your role and experience?
  • What’s your company’s direction?
  • What is the most challenging or exciting part of your work?
  • How do you juggle your commitments while staying relevant?
  • What do you look for in a candidate?

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