Is the beach calling? Craving a patio with a view? The lazy, hazy days of summer are here. The temptation could be to take the summer off from networking and put your career preparation activities on the back burner (of the grill, of course). However, some experts say that summertime is the ‘hottest’ time to network.
While it’s true that things in industry to tend to slow down during the summer months, it makes it the perfect time to ramp up your networking activities and reach out during this less busy time of year. These long, sunny days are a welcome reason for people to get out of the office, so take advantage of these opportunities to meet, greet and fine tune your networking skills.
Try out these summertime networking tips:
- Set a few networking goals. Fill in the blank for this statement, “When it comes to networking, this summer I want to _____.” Think about what you’d like to accomplish over the next few months and write those goals down – it also boosts your likelihood of achieving them if you tell someone.
- Freshen up your personal pitch. You’ve likely just finished a semester of school or maybe started a new summer job. So, what’s new with you? How are you going to introduce yourself and get the conversation going? Use this resource to refresh your Personal Pitch.
- Be social with social media. If you find yourself with some downtime, polish up your LinkedIn profile or connect with someone with the career background you’d like to meet. Try meetup.com to meet like-minded people. Check out what’s happening with networking groups or professional associations related to your field.
- Volunteer for a Charity Event. See if your favourite charitable group or a local not-for-profit is holding an event during the summer and sign up to help. It’s a perfect opportunity to get to know people in the community and lend a hand all at the same time.
- Reconnect with your network. We all get busy and lose touch with friends, former classmates and colleagues. Summer is a great time to reach out and meet on the patio, host a backyard BBQ or hit the hiking trails together.
Need some advice from a pro? Career Specialists are available throughout the summer to help you get your networking plans underway. Book an office hours appointment here.
So keep your networking cards in your beach bag and enjoy the summer!