3 Steps To Effective Virtual Networking
Networking via Zoom is the new normal.
The virtual networking experience can be awkward, tense, and filled with too many instances of “you’re on mute.”
Yet, networking and making connections is still an essential component of the MBA experience. Noah Askin, INSEAD assistant professor of organizational behavior, offered a few tips for how to make the most of the experience as part of the recent INSEAD webinar, “Networking in Our New Reality.”
DETERMINE YOUR GOALS
It’s important to set your goals before attending any networking event. Determining your goals will help establish a more effective foundation and allow you to identify who to connect with.
MAKE A CONTACTS LIST
The next step will be mapping out the people in your network.
“What we’re talking about here is not necessarily about establishing totally new ties, although they can be in there,” Askin explains. “It’s about people that you know reasonably well – contact them three to four times a year. And it’s about strengthening weak ties – keep them updated on what you’re doing.”
REGULARLY REACH OUT
A big part of networking is the numbers game. The more people you reach out to, the more possibility for opportunities to come your way. While quantity is important, quality research is even more critical.
“Most people have an array of information about them online, whether it’s LinkedIn or a social media site. Use that to your advantage. Find out who these people are,” Askin explains. “And be prepared with your own story. ‘I’m interested in x and y, you’re somebody who focuses on x and y and would be really helpful to me.’”