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Networking is an important career development skill worth building. In its simplest form, networking involves having a “career conversation” with someone to gather and share information.

Networking & Informational Interviewing

When utilized appropriately, networking with your contacts can help you:

  • Explore careers and jobs – By talking to professionals in informational interviews, you can ask questions to learn about a job, career field, industry, or workplace to help you determine its degree of “fit” for you.
  • Find a job – When looking for jobs, you can use networking to find out about opportunities (even some that haven’t been posted yet) and market yourself to people who may be able to help you in your search. By talking to people about your qualifications, as well as your positions and employers of interest, and asking questions, you may learn about job leads and other resources that you wouldn’t find elsewhere.

Where do you find people to network with? All around you! Because networking involves simply sharing information about careers and jobs, you can network with other students, family friends, professors, supervisors, and professionals you meet at career fairs or other events. You can also use LinkedIn, the online professional networking website, as well as the Berkeley Career Network (BCN), to find professionals to connecting with.

Surveys of employers consistently indicate that over 50% of all open positions are filled through networking! So begin to develop your networking skills – you will gain a valuable tool that will serve you throughout your career life.

Helpful Links

Introducing Yourself

Check out how to connect with a 5-point message for guidance on what to say about yourself when asking for an informational interview.

When asking for a networking meeting or meeting people at an event, be prepared to share these kinds of information: