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How To Build A Network When You Don't Have One

Last updated October 13, 2022

Whether you're searching for your first job or are wanting to level up your career, having a strong professional network can go a long way. Your network can help you meet new people, make professional connections, and maybe even land a job or internship. Don’t have a network yet? We’re here to help! Here are 5 ways to build and grow your professional network.

Reach out to your network

You may not have realized it, but you already have a network! Your network can consist of anyone you’ve worked with in any capacity - bosses, coworkers, members of clubs you were on, teammates, coaches, and maybe even a few trusted educators. They can vouch for you, introduce you to new people, provide references for you when applying for jobs, and more. When you’re ready for your next opportunity, be sure to check in with your network to start your search.

Create a LinkedIn profile

LinkedIn is a free professional networking website that can help you with your job search and achieve your career goals! When you create a LinkedIn profile, you can learn about companies that are hiring in your area and build your network by connecting with people in jobs and industries you are interested in. LinkedIn also offers free resources and training to help you gain new skills and level up in your career!

Join a group, club, or volunteer

One of the easiest ways to make new connections is to join a group or participate in a club - both in and outside of school. Not only will you learn new skills and find new passions that you can add to your resume, you’ll be able to meet new people, build new relationships, and expand your professional network.

Leave your comfort zone

While your friends and people who share similar interests to you can certainly be part of your network, every now and then it’s important to push yourself outside of your comfort zone to meet new people! To leave your comfort zone, expand your network, and learn something new, we recommend reaching out to someone on LinkedIn who has a job you’re interested in or works for a company you would like to learn more about. Ask if they would be willing to set up an informational interview to answer any questions you have about their job, company, or industry. Not only will informational interviews teach you about different careers and job paths, the person you conducted the interview with is now a part of your network! Ask them if you can connect with them via email or LinkedIn after the email to stay in touch after the interview.

Be consistent and be patient

Networks are not built overnight. It takes time to build professional relationships with people! Be consistent. You never know when you will need to reach out to your network for help, so keep in touch by reaching out a couple of times a year, even if it’s just to say hello.

Need some more support as you start to grow your network? Text #Jobs to 33-55-77 to chat with one of our job advisors! Looking for a job? Sign up for our free first job resources!

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