The word ‘networking’ can be applied to a number of subjects: business, social, community, etc. Each one has a similar focus, but distinctly different goals and agendas. The similar focus is that each center on connecting with individuals or groups that have like interests and needs. The difference lies in what an individual or company purposes to gain from this connection. While there are numerous applications of the word ‘networking’, professional networking distinguishes itself by relating to a more direct and personal connection with an individual or entity (company/organization). Unlike business networking, which is goal centered around what provides growth and profitability for a person or company; or social networking, which focuses on building and maintaining mass ‘connections’ with persons or a group; professional networking has an agenda of establishing relationships with others of that profession. Its goal is to provide personal development and growth for an individual in that profession; not so much solely for personal gain, but through a professional relationship of sharing. It is a symbiotic connection where it is the relationship that provides the development and growth. Moreover, professional networking provides a resource base of knowledge, communications, and support that continually expands throughout one’s career and personal life.
Building A Professional Network: 5 Ways to Get Started
Connect – Reach out to individuals whom you feel have knowledge, experience, or connections that you need. However you do this, via on-line, personal contact, or other, it is vitally important to establish yourself ‘within’ the profession as someone serious and committed ‘to’ the profession.
Professional membership – Become a member of professional organizations or societies within the profession that provide communication and educational resources that could benefit you. Organizations such as th e ASCP, NSH, CAP, as well as local societies, can provide a plethora of resources accessible to you.
Attendance at professional settings – Whether local/state or national conferences/symposiums, this is an excellent opportunity to not only learn and gather technical information, but also to meet and interact with others within the profession; thereby expanding your professional network data base.
Share knowledge/ideas/training – Never miss an opportunity to share what you have learned or experiences you have had with someone seeking help or support. Even in simple interactive talk with others, whether they are presently or not, the relationship is strengthened by this because of the commonality in experiences.
Commitment to stay connected – Long-term professional relationships can be of great benefit in that it can lead to you being referred to others seeking your assistance, job opportunities, personal recommendations, and life-long friendships. It is important to be committed to maintaining this connection whether you are having a problem or not.
While building a professional network should be an integral part of the growth and development of new Histology and other medical professionals, it is never too late to begin establishing and maintaining this resource. Over a person’s career the wealth and benefits of networking continue to grow exponentially. Particularly with respect to patient care, we should never pass up an opportunity to solicit the thoughts and experiences of others who might assist us in problem solving, thereby assisting us in providing total quality care for the patient. Even if it is beyond our knowledge, we owe this to the patient to give them the best that the field of Histotechnology can offer. That will only come through the collective minds of serious-minded professionals like yourselves. In closing, ‘Let’s Stay Connected’!!!.
For more information on professional resources for Histotechnology, or for information on the Lab Storage Systems, Inc. product portfolio, please contact our Customer Relationship Manager, or our Technical Marketing Specialist.