Everyone has always told me that since I was an extrovert that I should be a natural at networking. This has usually been true but I found my self not really excelling at it. I heard about a great book on networking from a career podcast. The book is called Work the Pond: Use the Power of Positive Networking to Leap Forward in Work and in Life. It is co-authored by Darcy Rezac, Judy Thompson and Gayle Hallgreen-Rezac. This book was written in 2005 and while the technology has changed, the strategies in it still hold true. I have always been able to start conversations with people I don’t know and build rapport easily. However, I have always struggled with organization and follow-up. I picked up some good tips from this book on staying organized and wrapping up conversation so I can talk to as many people as possible. This book offers some practical tips such as where to keep your business cards while at an event. Men have it so easy. They can just put their cards in their suit jacket pocket. As a woman, sometimes it’s hard to have an easy place to put cards when mingling at a party of function.
I work in a profession that doesn’t rely as heavily on networking as it should. I strongly believe that a good public services librarian take every opportunity to develop a personal network. In my experience this has helped me to meet new people who may not be aware of library resources. I have also met contacts that I have invited to do library programs and activities. I also try to take the opportunity to make contacts at local and national conferences. I like that I have a large network at my fingertips because of the ease of connection with social media. This book gave me some more practical tools to network in a more effective way. So no matter your personality type, this book can make you into an effective networking guru.