Networking in the accounting industry is one of the best things you can do to improve your chances of getting a job. When you network, there is an exchange of ideas, and thats the value in networking. Did you know that 80% of people get their jobs based on connections? Being able to network in the accounting industry is crucial: there are many organizations that hold networking specific events. If you can take advantage of these events and successfully connect with others in the industry, you will build your network and your chances of landing that dream job will increase.

Why should you be networking? 

Besides the fact that itll most likely land you a job, networking is a great way to build your brand. Were talking about the brand that you represent: yourself. Networking allows you to show off your knowledge and ideas on a very personal level and its your chance to make a lasting impression. This may sound like a lot of pressure, but its all about knowing yourself and getting that across. Take some time to really think about what sets you apart and pick some experiences you want to bring to the table. Dont write a script, because each conversation is different. This is more of a reflective activity. Once youve got it down, networking can really increase your career opportunities! Landing a job is about who you know as well as what you know.

What are some of the most effective networking skills to have? 

Dont blow your networking event by skipping some of the most obvious steps! Approach others with a smile, and be confident in your gait. Make eye contact, have a firm handshake ready, and most importantly, listen to people as they talk. The last step is the most important because it helps you dive deeper into the conversation and allows you to reveal similarities you and the other person might have. It also gives you a chance to ask relevant and appropriate questions.

What does a successful networking conversation look like?
Successful networking conversations are a two way street. You each have something meaningful to add to the conversation and will take away something new. After youve exchanged greetings, make sure you contribute to the conversation by asking questions, listening carefully, and avoiding negative topics.  Towards the end of the conversation, make sure to wrap up the conversation with an open door (Id love to follow up with you on this or Keep me posted on your progress). Then, proceed to exchange business cards and after the event, follow up promptly! 
Do you have any more tips for networking? Share them in the comments below! 
Related Posts 

Stay up to date on all CPA Exam changes by watching our latest webcast: