Networking, Personal Branding and LinkedIn

Professional networking can provide you with potential employment opportunities, referrals and inside information on your career field. The more contacts you have, the more likely you’ll hear about job leads, and have a contact who can vouch for you. It may also lead to future employment and internship opportunities! 

Tips for Building Your Network

Networking 101

Asking for information can feel strange at first, start small and build up. Begin networking with people you know, family, friends, professors, and advisors. Extend your reach to professional associations, career fairs, and connect with Oswego alumni from around the world through the Alumni Sharing Knowledge program!

Check out the ASK Program

Personal Branding and LinkedIn

The act of personal branding involves presenting yourself and telling your story in an intentional way. Your brand is your unique mix of personality, skills, and experience - the impression that others gain from you, your online presence, and your reputation. LinkedIn is an online service that allows users to manage their brand and professional identity, build and maintain their professional network from the 675 million+ members, and access employer insights, company profiles, opportunities, and more.

Learn More about Personal Branding

Learn about Digital Dirt program

Informational Interview

Setting up an informational interview with a professional in your field of interest is another great way to network and gain valuable insight. Ask questions to learn exactly what the career entails, what the employer's expectations are for future candidates and to identify gaps in your course work and experiences. Informational interviews usually last about 20-30 minutes and can be easy to coordinate through friends and family, and social media sites.

What should you ask during an informational interview?

The Elevator Pitch

Knowing yourself, your skills, and what you are capable of offering the field is the key to successful networking. Present yourself as a confident and competent candidate, practice your elevator pitch. Before the conversation ends, ask if you can connect with them on LinkedIn and for any other contacts. 

Following-up

Always follow up after a meeting. Send a thank you note or email that references what you discussed, a piece of advice or tidbit of knowledge. If you feel it is appropriate send your resume, and ask they pass it along if they hear of any job openings. If they agree to connect on LinkedIn send them a request within a few days.