What is a young professional?
What is a young professional is a term that can be answered in many ways but typically they are someone who is between the ages of 20-40 years old. Age is not so much a factor in my mind to be a young professional as there are some people who enter the professional world at 20 years old and there are others who enter at 30-35 years old. A young professional is someone who is in the learning and development stages of their careers. These people are motivated to meet others, are innovative, want to be a part of the community, and are humble in knowing that there are others who can provide mentorship and leadership to help develop their own skills. They are hungry for knowledge and the opportunity to meet other business professionals to develop their clientele and social network. Young professionals are the people working early in the morning and late at night to make a name for themselves in the community and in their business life. Through proper networking, education, mentorship, and community involvement, young professionals will be the future business decision makers.
Why Should we Network?
Networking can be one of the most powerful ways to spend one’s time to help grow as a person both in their personal lives and their business lives. For me, networking helps in the following ways:
- Building a social network- as a young professional especially, you are at the early stages of your career and are finding ways to make yourself of value to the business you work for. Networking is the answer. You need to build a social network of people that are like-minded, have similar goals, and can possible provide you leads and business in the future. It is important to know a variety of people in a variety of different fields as everyone has something to offer.
- Lead Generation- Networking is a fantastic way to build your business and your personal profile. Whether you are a brick layer, a fashion designer, or a sales rep, you need to let people know what you do in order to have them think of you when opportunities arise in their day-to-day activities. The more people you touch on a regular basis to remind them of the services you provide, the more opportunities will come your way. Through networking, you will build relationships with others, have opportunities to talk to people you may have been trying to get a hold of, or just learn about what is going on in your community that will spark up opportunities for you to provide a service.
- Personal growth- As a young professional, we still have a lot to learn and are dealing with obstacles that many go through everyday. We are very confident people but also understand that there are people who have been doing this a lot longer then we have. Networking allows you the opportunity to meet people who have seen and done things you may not have. You can talk to them about their experiences, their mistakes, and how you can apply that to your life and business. You can meet people who are where you want to be in twenty years and they can provide you with advice on how to get there. Sometimes it is just nice to talk to someone who is in the exact same position as you; young, working long hours, trying to make a name for yourself. Let it out, work through problems together, LEARN.
This world is full of interesting people that can make a huge difference in your life and the only way to meet them is to put yourself out there and network. Your future best friend, boss, wife, mentor, sale could be right next door.