Why networking matters, by Sophia Koniarska

Sophia Koniarska, OA Regional Business Development Manager (West), explains why you need to network effectively.

Lifestyle not diet
Increasingly people find work through networking, so it is vital you master this skill. Networking is a great way to gain knowledge, meet interesting people and find opportunities.

People can be quite negative about networking, often confusing it with schmoozing. Networking is not about making as many connections as possible; boasting about your achievements or taking advantage of people willing to share their expertise. If you believe these misconceptions, then networking will be a chore and a negative experience. You are also less likely to succeed, because people respond better to enthusiasm and helpfulness.

I think networking is more about an attitude rather than a process. Someone once described it to me as a “lifestyle not a diet”. The best opportunities and connections usually arise when you approach networking with an open mind, willing to give as much as you take.

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