Major Key Alert! 3 Networking Tips for Career Success

Connecting with people who share similar interests as you is essential to success. Here are three modern-day tips to help you land those connections:

Start Where You Are

Truth is, you’re probably already networking some way or another. Use connections that naturally present themselves in your life and work to develop them into your professional network. Do you currently have a teacher who challenges you creatively? Is there a coach or guidance counselor who provides limitless advice? Maybe a family friend who offered to let you shadow them at work? Don’t be afraid to pick their brains! Ask about their career trajectories. You’d be surprised at the lessons they learned along the way.

Polish Your Virtual Brand

All these years of mastering the perfect selfie will finally be worthwhile. Put your best foot forward by creating a LinkedIn profile before you graduate high school. List any volunteer experience you might have, any clubs you were a part of, and videos of your best collaborative projects. Add your teachers and maybe even your parent’s friends. They can help endorse your shared skills and provide letters of recommendations for your profile. Don’t be afraid to ask these individuals to be your mentors and even help to connect you with others. It’s a fun way to track all your achievements. Plus! With functionalities to view internship opportunities and connect with field experts, it’s the go-to platform for all your professional networking needs.

Be sure to reference the LinkedIn Profile Checklist when thinking about what else to include in each section of your profile. Then use the unique URL generated to share your profile with future employers, site supervisors, and even admissions officers. Consider this a business card 2.0.

Elevator Pitch

Imagine you’re stuck in an elevator with the CEO of YouTube. Your dreams of becoming the next viral sensation flash before your eyes. All of a sudden, he asks you to share a little about yourself. Thirty seconds on the clock – what do you say? Learning how to effectively communicate your future goals, strengths and distinguished accomplishments concisely is crucial when trying to achieve your dreams. Visit the Rutgers Handshake website to view sample pitches from current students and download the elevator pitch template to create your own!

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