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You probably know that having a strong network is one of the most essential parts of building your career, but you might not know how to go about that. If you’re at a loss as to how to build an effective network, here are some tips that should help.


Ask for Introductions

If you’re having trouble making connections with others, simply ask those you know for introductions. This can be a great first step in growing your network, especially if you’re not always comfortable talking to complete strangers.


Know How to Use Social Media

Social media platforms like Facebook and LinkedIn can be endlessly useful in growing your network, but only if you know how to present yourself. Don’t post anything on social media that could be used to portray you in a negative light, and don’t mix your professional profiles with your personal ones. Keep the “fun” posts and status updates on the Facebook and Instagram profiles you share with friends while you use your LinkedIn profile to present yourself as an up-and-coming professional.


Look for Connections At Work

As much as you might want to focus on making connections with professionals outside of your company, there are also plenty of networking opportunities in your own office. Look for company activities that align with your interest and career goals, and take the time to get to know your coworkers. It will come in handy whether you wish to advance within your company or you just want to make a good impression with an employer.


Invest in Contact You Already Have

Meeting new people is exciting, but you shouldn’t neglect the contacts you’ve already made. Keeping in contact with those who already know you is a great way to build trust with them, especially when new career opportunities become available.


Pay It Forward

Finally, remember that networking isn’t all about you. There are plenty of others who could use help to grow their network and find new career opportunities. If you’re in a position to help others, don’t hesitate to do so. Not only is it the decent thing to do, but it will give you the kind of reputation that you need to advance in your career.