3: Connect

Networking

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Gain access to people with resources and wisdom.  You have to spread out your net.  Companies want to meet you.  They want to build their network, because they do not want to use employment agencies!

 

Always continue to inform key people.
Keep key people around you informed of your growth and relevant weekly or monthly activities.  Informing is way of keeping them interested and ensuring that you are on the right path.  If you visit a company during your course, and you keep contact with the company or people you worked with earlier in program you will have a much better chance of successfully engaging with them afterwards.  They will know and trust you as if you have walked a long road with them, by just keeping them informed!  You will also be able to use the act of informing as a basis for learning from them and you will avoid making unnecessary mistakes.

 

EXERCISE 4
Find local companies in your career and industry interest

 

Resources:

  1. Use the yellow pages, and Google search to find companies.  http://www.yellowpages.co.za/   Anyone in the company will point you to the right person to speak to.  Again, the companies are quite keen to help groups like yours.
  2. Your lecturers.  They know all the companies in the area that you can target.  Ask them who you can go and talk to.  Also ask them: How do you start your career path?  What is a solid grounding? 
  3. IInnovUS is a management division within Stellenbosch University, which is responsible for technology transfer and new business development on the campus.  They have a list of companies that they are involved with.  http://www.innovus.co.za/
  4. Employment agencies.  Use the!  Get as much as possible interviews.  Not only do you get used to the interview process, but you also get a better idea of the companies out there.

 

Actions:

  • Look for at least ten! 
  • Try forming a group of people interested in the same thing.  You can then visit these companies together.
  • Contact them and explain your reason:

 

Get a tour of the company.

  • You want to find out what they are about.
  • What skills do you need to start working for them?
  • Would you like to do this job?

 

Make profile of one of the employees or even the boss

  • Interview them!  Good chance to use the typical interview questions and hear what they say.
  • What did they do until now?  What are you proud of?  What is nice?  What would you have done differently?  What did you learn?  What was an important base?
  • Get a picture of a typical career path.

 

More actions:

    • Post the information you found on Ning for others to learn from.
    • If anyone in the company is interested in your personal growth path, invite them to Ning. 
    • Always send thank you emails afterwards.  This is the way that you grow your network.
    • Visit at least 3 companies (or ten!) before the next workshop!

     

Continue to grow.

 

Steps

Education Institution
Step 1: Gather information
Step 2: Choose
Step 3: Act
Step 4: Grow

 

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