Allergic to Networking? The ability to curate connections is a powerful leadership skill, and pollination works better in networks than noses (#DadJoke). There’s mountains of research to prove it, but one stat sums it up perfectly: almost three-quarters of professionals get hired by organisations they have an existing connection with.
And where’s everyone networking these days?
Aaah…we had you, and then we lost you again.
Hear us out. LinkedIn is actually a fast and effective way to build relationships with fabulous people. Think of it as a giant, continuous networking event; you can connect with any of the 900 million members from the comfort of your
lounge home office anytime. Emails change, but LinkedIn follows people through every job and organisation, which means you can too.
Enter the gender
wealth pay confidence network gap
You won’t be shocked to learn that women are under-represented on LinkedIn. The network gap means women miss opportunities simply because we don’t have the right connections. Here’s the kicker: despite having shallower networks, women are a third more likely to take a course on improving them.
Take your space
If the idea of LinkedIn influencers sets your *BS* radar off, think again. If we want to change the face of leadership, we need to take up space where other leaders are. Building a network means putting yourself out there in a way that brings attention to your personal brand – and when we actually do it, women get outsized results. Yes, you could take a course on LinkedIn, but why not instead cover off some quick dos and don’ts, then just get started?
Do: be yourself when sharing achievements, news and asks
New job? Learned something interesting? Need a hand? Don’t be afraid to share. Your authentic voice doesn’t have to mean bringing the personal into the professional – and no, you don’t need an inspiring story. Be genuine, and keep it simple, informative and factual. Think about how you’d share an update with a workmate in real life, and write it like that. An easy shortcut? If someone has already posted about you, simply reshare it with an intro at the top.
See Kristen’s example.
Do: share event takeaways
If you’ve attended an event, you’ve learned something that could benefit others – so post about it. Summarise your highlights and @ the speakers and hosts – they may amplify your voice by resharing. While you’re at it, don’t forget to hit the “connect” button on the profiles of anyone you want to keep in touch with.
See Nat’s example
Do: repost with commentary or comment
Women are finding their voices by demanding change, giving fresh perspectives and being unapologetically themselves. Like a post or article? Reshare it with your thoughts. If that feel’s intimidating, start by leaving a comment on someone else’s post; they’ll appreciate you joining the conversation.
See Powrsuiter Stephanie’s example
The humblebrag. It goes like this: You want everyone to know about the awesome thing you did. Bragging is frowned upon, so we take the middle ground, celebrating in a self-deprecating way that highlights our flaws while attributing Lady Luck. 🤦♀️ Remember, simple and genuine works – and it’s ok to explicitly say how proud you are of yourself. Tag us, and we’ll be proud of you too!
For the lols: How to avoid the Humblebrag cringe factor
Don’t: do nothing
Women worry (for good reason) about coming across as over-confident and pushy, so we downplay our achievements or don’t mention them at all. There’s no need to overthink it. If you find something interesting or valuable, your network will too. In fact, they’ll thank you for handing it to them on a silver platter. Don’t wait for a perfect profile to start sharing (but if it’s gathering dust, here are some quick fixes).
30 second action:
- Procrastination: Stop stalling, start doing We all put off important stuff, even though we know it’ll come back to bite us. We all do it, we’re all aware we do it, and we all seem unable to kick the habit despite knowing how irrational it…
- The dos and don’ts of negotiating a job offer So you’ve been offered a new job, congrats! Here's everything you need to know before you say 'yes'.
- 5 gender equity practices for 2023 Studies show that diverse skills and ideas that come from having more women on the c-suite and boards of directors can boost the profits and value of an organisation. There are proven best practices that can help deliver more profitable and fair workplaces.…
- The best leadership podcasts for women Our curated list of our favourite podcasts episodes for women leaders. Subscribe for new suggestions every week.