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How to
CONNECT BEFORE RESTARTING: FIVE WAYS TO GROW YOUR NETWORK
21 May 2020

Staying connected while social distancing may seem like a daunting task. However, as the global community rapidly shifts towards digital connectivity, networking is now taking centre-stage. Here are five ways you can maintain and grow your network from a safe distance

1. Reconnect with existing contacts 

A great starting point in cultivating your network is to go through your current address book. Choose five existing contacts and reconnect with one person each day of the week. Reaching out to colleagues, clients, old friends, former bosses or professors will reignite relationships and bring them to life. A simple “how are you doing?” could make a big difference and go a long way as people are craving connectivity during these isolated times. 

 2. Find a mentor  

Conventional platforms for knowledge sharing are moving into the digital arena. Professionals in nearly every field are offering insights into their expertise through various on–line channels. Join a webinar, on–line expo or virtual panel to quench your intellectual thirst and meet new people  Virtual communities offer several opportunities to be curious, ask questions and build relationships through shared experiences.  

 3. Update your social media 

Social isolation has influenced the way we communicate through online platforms. In-person gatherings are now prohibited, and social media is becoming the “new normal” of social interaction. Whether you’re sharing an inspiring post on Twitter or posting an opinion piece on LinkedIn, updating your social media will capture people’s attention and stimulate contact. Don’t be afraid to comment on others posts either. Use content sharing as leverage to connect with others within or outside your circle and grow your network. The next time you hop on Twitter, why not share a post on your favorite “How to” article that has made an impact on your life in lockdown. 

 4. Sharing is caring 

Whether you are a talented pianist, baker, rock star mom or web-design guru, sharing your gifts with others has the propensity to bring communities together. If you have a wealth of knowledge on a particular topic, why not take the opportunity to share it over the internet. Test the waters with a podcast, blog, video channel, or website. Chances are there are a lot of people out there who think the same as you do. Create or join a safe space where people can interact and exchange ideas. These connections can help you build a new network of people who support and challenge you.  

5. Look around you 

The biggest impact you can have on a community is your own. There are countless opportunities within your circle to increase your network. Discover here apps to help you  connect with your neighbourhood and local businesses. Nextdoor, along with several other local media publishers, are bringing communities together by offering volunteering and collaboration opportunities. Whether it’s sewing protective masks, delivering food to the elderly, or collaborating on homeschooling, there are many ways to interact with your local community and at the same time, do some good in the neighbourhood.