Nervous to Network at Work?
Are you networking online enough? You may think you don’t have time “network” during work; however, you may be missing out on opportunities to accelerate your research AND position yourself as an “expert.” In other words, online networking has two separate, basic approaches– learning (passive) and sharing (active).
It’s not that one is better than the other. Generally speaking, I think the nature of our jobs in construction accounting and management makes us more “passive” networkers. Let’s take a look at both.
Passive Networking for Research
Learn to use passive networking to your advantage for researching software issues that go beyond the basic “how-to” topics. Bookmark blogs, sign up for newsletters, “follow” SMEs on twitter, and join LinkedIn groups that are chock full of content that is germane to your role, industry, or expertise.
Sage has several communities that you can join, to pick your peers’ brains. Some of the most common, but useful:
- Sage City https://sagecity.na.sage.com/
- Sage University http://www.sageu.com/
- Sage Construction blog http://blog.sagecre.com/
LinkedIn has scores of “Groups” where you can post specific questions to users (or search posts), which you may not find in typical ‘help’ documentation; here are a few (starting with OURS):
- Ledgerwood Assoc.’s Sage 300 CRE Group https://www.linkedin.com/groups/4149067
- Sage Construction and Real Estate https://www.linkedin.com/groups/3729866
- CFMA (Valley of the Sun) https://www.linkedin.com/groups/666147
- AEC Industry Interest Group https://www.linkedin.com/groups/132446
Active Networking for Identity
Here’s where “content marketing” is truly “King.” Again, this takes some time and discipline, as well as strategy. Using the top channels like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and Instagram in an integrated effort to share your expertise — should have a defined endgame.
Do you want to drive traffic to your website to sell products or services? Are you a Subject Matter Expert (SME), perhaps looking for your next consulting gig (or position)? Are you aligned with a non-profit or cause for which you want to build awareness?
Do you want to simply build your company’s brand?
Whatever your purpose is, stay consistent. Comment on others’ contributions, share it, like it, repurpose it. Come up with original material, yet cite others’ work that supports your opinion.
Now, for the Hard Part
Ready for ‘Advanced Networking?’ — Show up!
Expand your online networking with your physical presence. Attend meetings and events so that your networking peers put a face to the content. Meeting the “author” makes your online contributions so much easier to share. There’s something so satisfying about “connecting” with the person you admire online. It adds an exponential amount of power to sharing.
Here’s a list of networking groups that can change your professional life, whether you give a tweet or not! *Some are local, check your community for similar groups.
- TUG – The Users Group for Sage 300 Construction and Real Estate, Sage 100, and Sage Estimating http://www.tugweb.com/
- Construction Financial Management Association http://www.cfma.org/
- Valley Partnership (Phoenix) http://www.valleypartnership.org/
- Arizona Tech Council https://www.aztechcouncil.org/