1. Go to networking events. Getting to know more people in your field is very important in order to build new relationships. However, networking is not solely about asking favors. You have to help others as well by sharing information that might be relevant to them.
When going to corporate events, conferences, holiday parties, industry gatherings or get-togethers, make sure you have your business card with you so you can let people know how they can reach you. In case you get cards during an event, make sure to ask if you can call first rather than calling out of the blue and risking being seen as impolite.
As soon as you get home, make sure to write something about the people you met on the back of their business cards to make it easier to remember them. Then, you can reach each person by sending a short note regarding your meeting, or something you may have in common. Don’t forget to express your appreciation when a new acquaintance makes time for your scheduled meet-up.
2. Job interviews. After interviews, absolutely send a thank-you note or email the same day, or within 24 hours. If you were interviewed by a panel, don’t forget to send each person on the panel a unique thank-you note.
A few days after the interview, express your appreciation once more, and if you can, talk about a certain topic during the interview in which you may want to refine what you said previously. This will give them an idea of how much you’ve researched.
3. Informational interviews. Reach out to professionals who are working in the field you are currently interested in. Get insight from them—They can refer you to some important people they know. Ask for advice and suggestions, especially if you’re switching to a different career field.
Again, send thank-you notes and express gratitude, no matter whom you speak to at the various crucial points on your job-hunting journey. Let your contacts know that you’re reaching out to people they recommended. And of course, keep in touch and update them about new people you encounter on your journey.