The COVID-19 situation has resulted in many conferences and networking sessions to be canceled. With that said, does it mean that we should stop networking? The answer is no. Networking is even more crucial at times like this, be it if you are a job seeker, employer, or just someone who just wants to meet new people.
The New Networking
If you have not realized, there have been many webinars held on Zoom, Hangouts, or any video conferencing tools ever since the worsening of the COVID-19 situation. It basically shows us how amazing technology is and how adaptable humans can be. Face-to-face networking might slowly become yesterday’s thing as technology allows you to network anytime, anywhere easily.
Some of the advantages of virtual networking can be
- Practice Social Distancing. After this COVID-19 situation, social distancing might become a new habit and norm for everyone
- Save Cost. As compared to a physical venue, holding it online can reduce the cost significantly and possibly involve more participants.
- Save Time. Imagine you are interested in one of the conferences that are held at somewhere that is a 12-hours flight away. With virtual networking, you might be able to attend it, despite the time difference, at your own location.
On the other hand, disadvantages can be
- Technology Disruptions. Poor internet connection, low-quality camera, and noisy background are some of the factors that can disrupt the virtual networking session.
- Loss of Human Touch. No more handshakes, no more exchanging of physical name cards and it will be tougher to express yourself through body language.
How Can We Continue to Network During/After Lockdowns?
1. Get Ready to Network
Like video interviews, investing in good cameras, microphones, and headphones is unavoidable. To ensure that the networking experience is pleasant, you also have to create a dedicated space at home for it. Making sure that your background is uncluttered, lighting is on point as well as a good internet connection.
After the lockdown, virtual networking sessions can still carry on if users do find it more productive and effective to do so. This is also especially so if the COVID-19 situation will require some time to mellow down.
2. Updating your LinkedIn/ Brand
This might be a good time for you to be more active on LinkedIn as many professionals are devoting time to network there. If it has been ages since the last time you updated your profile, take some time to update it with keywords, and provide information to increase your visibility in the market. Not only that, but you can also join groups on LinkedIn that are of similar interest to you to network. All these activities can help you to connect to professionals who can potentially refer to job, learning, or business opportunities for you.
3. Stay In-touch with your Existing Connections
Other than fostering new relationships with new people, do not forget about your existing connections! During times like this, it will be great to show some care and concern to the people around you. This can be done through a simple text, for example, “How are you?”, “Are you coping well with the situation?”. It is only through supporting each other then we can all overcome this period together.
The fastest way to grow is to network.
Kingfisher Recruitment Group is a global provider of total recruitment solutions. We help clients design people strategies, attract and develop talents worldwide across the Healthcare & Life Sciences, Professional Services, Technology, Retail & Consumer, Manufacturing, Automotive, Property & Construction, and Engineering industries.