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Networking for Women in STEM

简·奥哈拉(Jane O'Hara)

很多人都害怕网络的概念。 在一个满是陌生人的房间里走来走去,介绍自己,并进行“销售宣传”,产品就是你,尤其是当你认为你试图向其推销自己的人在任何群体中的地位较高时或者你所在的领域(或试图闯入的领域)可能会令人畏惧。

适应新环境

When I first moved to Vancouver, arriving fresh off the plane without an offer of a job, I was advised time and time again that networking was my best hope of finding the position that I desired. However, at that time I had moved from Ireland, where some things are done differently and the word ‘networking’ was barely in my vocabulary. If it featured at all in my previous life or career, it usually involved a conspiratorial chat at a conference or an event run by my university and was invariably conducted informally and over a glass or two of wine, and with people I already knew, or who were friends of friends. And while it seemed that in this new land, networking was a more formalised process, the similarities of how it worked quickly became apparent to the novice me.

建立联系

我了解到的是,要结识新朋友,结识新朋友,聊天和交换故事,这非常让人联想到以娱乐为目的的社交活动,但主要的区别是:保持这些联系,在他们之上建立并培育他们是这对您的职业生涯以及社交生活至关重要。 如果您可以在社交场合结识某人,并且发现他们也喜欢打排球并且在星期二需要一名额外的球员,那么您还可以通过询问友好的问题来学习,他们知道某人正在招聘某个可能适合您的职位。

我发现,如果您在与人会面时真正是自己,只是在职业上谈论自己想做的事和想要去的地方,以及简单地拍摄温哥华最佳购物或水坑的微风,那真是太好了事情可能发生。 别忘了,您尝试与之联系的这些人也只是这些人,很可能曾几何时处于您的情况。 通常,他们不会咬人或咆哮,实际上会想尽自己最大的能力帮助您-这是人的天性,不是吗?

The Impact of Networking

Incorporating networking into my job search meant attending as many courses, workshops and events related to the research and biotechnology industries as I could fit in to each week, in between my shifts in a West Van coffee shop. I also got into the swing of being active in chatting with people attending these events about who I was and what I was interested in doing. And to my surprise, doors started opening for me.

My big chance (though I didn’t know at the time how important this would be) came through a conversation with a researcher at a workshop, who was employed somewhere I would have loved to have worked. During the break, I followed him from the room (in case he was leaving without me handing over my contact details!) and actually waited outside the bathroom for him, because I was so keen to present my business card and be memorable enough that he would keep me in mind if any opportunities arose in his research institute. It paid off in this case, as shortly afterwards he sent me a job ad that was not in public circulation. This job was a great fit for me and I subsequently got an interview and was offered the job. It’s worked out well for me so far and I owe this outcome to the practice of networking.

Some people do manage to get jobs without using networking, but it can never hurt. It’s not supposed to be a quick fix but a process of building lasting connections;  a network that will be there for you in the future no matter what direction your career takes over time.

Final Tips for Networking

其他一些建议:

  1. Get some business cards printed up, even if you are not currently working. It looks professional and is far smoother to hand over a card to a new contact rather than digging through your purse to find a scrap of paper on which to scribble your details.
  2. Don’t underestimate the possibilities for networking while taking part in activities that interest you, whether it’s volleyball, yoga or a film club. The premise behind networking is that people like to talk! These are places where you can also build connections, in a little less formal setting, which can also be very fruitful.

迈出下一步

SCWIST frequently hosts free networking events for women in STEM. Check out our event listings to see what’s coming up subscribe to our newsletter to receive the latest event updates directly in your inbox.


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