Establishing Your Brand by Building Relationships

By: Britney Yates

Networking is a valuable tool in the workforce, but where to start? In this digital age, we have access to everything in the palm of our hands. With the internet and social media, there truly aren’t any limits to connect with others. How often do we use that to our advantage to connect with people that share similar career or business interests?

Have you considered how sites like Instagram, Facebook, Meetup and LinkedIn could actually be resourceful in finding about that new career path, ways to approach various goals and to engage people in positions that you would like to be in or even just to meet another professional to socialize with? That was one of my approaches as I made the choice to shift my career path to Personal Care Science.

Initially, after graduating with a degree in Chemistry, I was a bit unsure what the next steps for my future would be. After speaking with several leaders in the industry, I found that this is not uncommon.  I wanted to find and meet people who shared the same career interests and get their input on the things that they loved and disliked about what they do for a living. There’s nothing like a first-hand review! I began to search the web for information about cosmetic chemists, the requirements, and an overview of the industry, but what I mostly found was very general information.  So, I began to search hashtags on the various social media sites in hopes to find someone that was in this field.

I was able to find quite a few people that were working in this industry by utilizing #Cosmetic, #cosmeticchemist, #cosmeticformulator, and a dozen others. I reached out and introduce myself to them and asked the questions that I really wanted to know about such as their careers, work day, education and the path they used to get to where they are now. Through these connections, I had the chance to meet professionals across the country and have an exchange on a platform that we often use only for entertainment. I’ve had the opportunity to set up telephone interviews with VPs of global brands and entrepreneurs, thanks to their strong social media presence. When I wasn’t able to find a person for my interviews, I turned to my personal network of friends and family.  That’s our primary network, so don’t forget the value that lies there.

Give your social media platforms a new test drive.  See what resources you can pull from them and the people you may have access to and build new relationships!

Are your experiences similar?  Different?  Can you add some insights?  Please submit to the PSMblog your thoughts, comments and experiences. psmblog@docs.rutgers.edu