Three Networking Myths that Hurt Your Career Growth

Three Networking Myths that Hurt Your Career Growth

When it comes to networking, executives tend to fall into two camps. The either love to network, or they . . . ignore it. Those executive who do not consciously maintaining their networks might believe one of the three top myths about networking that can negatively affect their career growth.

Myth #1: Networking is for job search only

Certainly, when executives are looking for a job, it is wise for them to actively reach out to connections. However, the most common error executives make when they do transition to new roles is that they forget to maintain the connections they have built.

Your network is your lifeline to executive career strategy. Don't let your network run cold!

Your network is your lifeline to executive career strategy. Don’t let your network run cold!

Executives–job seekers at every level, actually–must remember that the network they have built over the course of their job search need nurturing even after they get the job. These are the people whom executives can ask for advice, meet at industry conferences, and recommend for future roles within their own companies.

Myth #2: Networking is for extraverts only

Introverts are often given short shrift on the issue of networking. Extraverts paint these introverts as shy, retiring, or even misanthropic, when, in fact, the opposite is most likely true. These individuals are thoughtful, and they are known to enjoy one-on-one conversations, which is what meaningful networking truly is. Introverted executives can capitalize on their strengths of engaging in intensive listening, learning, and advising in the context of small-group conversation and count these as components of a powerful networking strategy that has nothing to do with sharing what they perceive to be insipid small talk over the punch bowl at a large business event.

Myth #3: Networking means constantly finding new people to talk to

Networking is not only about increasing the number of people you know. In fact, effective networking is more about deepening the good relationships executives already have, if those relationships are the right ones to solve the particular question. Therefore, rather than seek to expand the breadth of the network, executives might choose to start with the people they know best, and keep those relationships warm over the course of months to years. These professional friendships are extremely valuable when executives do find that they have job search or career advancement questions and needs–these people are part of a trusted network that now has very deep roots and is based on time-tested mutual trust.

If your executive career needs a valuable networking strategy, call Five Strengths.

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