As a graduating senior, I am so lost and even scared of my future. I am becoming independent from all perspectives. What am I going to do? Where can I find a job or an internship? Two guest speakers introduced their experiences in class last week, which helped me a lot.
John Hill, VP of Network at Techstars, used to be a Spartan, has worked for LinkedIn. He mentioned the importance of networking and I can’t agree more. He used a student who sits in the center of classroom as an example to illustrate the importance of knowing someone. He may know the person that you wanted to know.
Something I didn’t know before is the filter tool on LinkedIn. In class, he showed us how to build connections by selecting the criterial. For example, the city we want to stay, the career we want to have, looking for help from alumni. Then, go from there. It reminds me the time before I first came to U.S. in 2014, a teacher told me “everything is possible in America, you just have to try and find the opportunities”, I wasn’t sure how much I believed in it at that time. However, after 5 years, I have been benefited a lot from it, not I became successful, but that sentence provides me a lot of courage to overcome difficulties that you couldn’t imagine. I have never failed on something that because of the fear of trying. My ambitions and creativity did not get restricted because “I don’t think I could do that”.
I am not trying say everything could be achieved in here, but things are made toward this goal. I don’t think a professional would follow me or willing to, have time to help me, or respond my email without even knowing me. But once we have a function that was designed for this purpose intentionally, the “I don’t think” becomes “well, who knows, let’s try”.
So what I did once I get home was to update my profile, starting to think who do I know and then follow them.
Another speaker Julianne Pepitone, a freelancer writer/journalist who also knows digital medias, shared her experiences in class by FaceTime. As a freelancer, you do not have a company that helps to brand you, you are branding yourself. So the first thing I noticed about her was her engaging smile. I think the first impression is important especially in a business. Pepitone shared one tip that about writing was to keep words not over 40 more than the limitation. So if the length is 800, she won’t go beyond than 840 because it would take editors longer time to clean up her work.
Honestly, I have never thought about that before. But then I didn’t leave enough spaces for editors to revise. I am currently intern at the Michigan Supreme Court this semester and now I am working on writing features of court administrators. After listening to Pepitone’s suggestion, I changed my communication method right away. The goal is to hit 800 words, I turned 832 words in and left a note to my supervisor.
I think the whole point of the conversation was about “how to make others to feel comfortable to work with you”. A combination of what I have learnt from these two experiences is to be a networking person that people would like to work with.
And guess what I am going to do next? I am opening my LinkedIn page and about to connect with Julianne Pepitone! Good luck to me!