Network. Network. Network. That is one of the foremost pieces of classic advice given to people seeking to boost their careers. And as it turns out indeed, the success of a professional in their careers depends to a very large extend on the size and caliber of network they manage to create with other people in their field.
And with the numerous social media tools born of the web 2.0 revolution, the frontiers of networking have been pushed to new levels with lots of new opportunities to network becoming available to the person who is keen to boost their career.
Moreover, unlike the old techniques of networking which tended to favor the extrovert at the expense of the more reserved, the tools for networking made available by social media make it possible even for the most introverted person who is good at what they do to make a formidable network without even having to get outside their house in some cases.
Take for instance, social media like blogs.
If you are a professional in a given area, and have real know-how in that area, you can start a blog on a subject you are very good at, and keep updating it with posts containing fresh insights into various facets of your field of specialty. And if your blog is really visible (which you can make it by optimizing it for search engines and participating in discussions on other people’s blogs), you will soon find yourself being taken serious as an authority on your field by your peers – and very possibly being noticed in high places by people who have the ability to really boost your career (potential employers being an example).
The blog gives you the opportunity to be recognized as an authority in your professional field that in the old days would have taken years of slogging and rejection by publishers.
Internet forums are another form of social media you can exploit to boost your career. By making insightful comments on other people’s threads (ideally with a link to your blog whenever possible) and starting intelligent threads on the forums, you get a way of being discovered by people who matter in your field, and very possibly making friends in high places.
Social Networking Sites
Believe it or not, social networking sites such as Facebook and Tagged also offer you the opportunity to boost your career.
As a first step in this direction, you would consider sending friend requests to other people in your field of interest – and therefore making ‘friends’ with them. Then you can start various light-hearted discussions on your home page and also make ‘witty’ comments on discussions with professional connotations going on in your ‘professional friends’ pages. This way you have a chance of making real ‘professional’ friends who can, as your bonds deepen, direct you to new openings in your field or give you the tips you need to take you career to the next level.
These are just a few examples of social media applications you can use to boost your career, and using them consistently can help you create the network you need to make a successful career.