A network is a valuable asset for anyone to build.
As an apprentice, one of the most valuable assets that you need to develop is building your personal network. A strong network can support you throughout your career and spending just a little time each week to develop it will pay dividends in the future.
Here are five types of people that as an apprentice you can easily connect to and build a strong network without being spammy:
- Your Colleagues. Connect with your colleagues. Understand what they do and how your role impacts their deliverables. Do this in person or over Zoom if you are working from home. These connections will help you flourish in your current role and in the future; well you never know!
- Your Classmates. Connect with the other apprentices on your course. They are probably working in similar roles to you and may have similar career aspirations. These are ideal connections for supporting you on your course and also for longterm connections in your network.
- Other Apprentices. You should reach out to other apprentices that you see are active on Twitter or LinkedIn. People who are taking their careers seriously. Engaging with other apprentices again means you can cheer each other on with successes in pubic and see where and how their careers develop.
- Your Ideal Role. People that are in roles that you aspire to be one day. Reaching out to someone on LinkedIn or Twitter and explaining this goal to them is a sure-fire way to make a new connection. Everyone feels good when they can support or give advice to someone trying to get better. The key here is to not ask for too much of their time but ask, when appropriate, direct questions. They’ll be able to point you to resources that should accelerate your learning.
- Inspirational People. These don’t have to be celebrities! More like business people that produce content that inspires you. Reach out tell them why they inspire you. Tell them what problems in the world you are trying to solve. People love to support those trying to make a difference.
How to reach out and make these connections.
Reaching out to potential connections should be done using personal messages on Twitter or LinkedIn. Don’t spam out connection requests as although in the short term you might make a lot of new connections; you won’t be building a relationship that will support you in the future.
Also when you are swiping through your feed on LinkedIn or Twitter; don’t be passive. Comment on posts that you read; share your opinion. It counts and it will gain you more valuable followers and connections than likes here and there.
Let me know if you found this useful and if you are going to start to build your network. I am always available on Twitter via @JODonnellCoach so drop me a line and share how you are building your connections.