5 Ways to Successfully Network

By Alan L. Olsen, CPA, MBA (tax)
Managing Partner
Greenstein, Rogoff, Olsen and Co., LLP

Word of mouth is no longer the only networking option. As technology and the business world develop, so do networking opportunities. As consequence of our current recession, the recent rise of unemployment rates has caused many individuals to turn to more self-sufficient ways of making a living by starting their own business. If this is a road that you are exploring, networking is vital to business growth and new clientele. Below are 5 methods that you can use to successfully network.

1. Social Media – LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter have become popular with both the billion dollar corporation and the newest entrepreneur. This is an easy and cheap way to develop an online presence, and introduce yourself and your company to potential clients or mergers.

2. Become involved with your college alumni – College Alumni Associations provide excellent opportunities to network. A common bond can be instant between you those who graduated from your Alma Mauder. Several alumni organizations meet nationally. Check with the college or university that you graduated from to find a local group that you can join.

3. Specialized Business Groups – There are several specialized business groups created to bring CEOs of successful companies together to network and share business ideas. Many of these groups meet monthly or annually, and provide members with ideas to grow their companies.

4. Charitable Dinners or Events – Several organizations put on dinner events and galas to raise money for charitable causes. These events generally draw an audience that is likewise looking for other individuals to network with.

5. Industry Conferences and Workshops – Most industries have conferences and workshops where continuing education can be obtained. For example, the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants puts on several conferences during the year for CPAs to receive continuing education credits. Industry conferences allow individuals in the same field to come together to learn, share ideas and meet prospective mergers. There are several other places that individuals can look to network. Begin by starting your networking search in your local community.

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