I was in two minds about writing this article. I thought that networking is not a relevant topic because everyone in Malawi already knows everyone.
However, after a couple of weeks I realized that I am only thinking in this way because I have had the luxury of hiding behind my parents who can give me access to almost everyone in Malawi – I’m very lucky in that sense but this scenario is not true for most people.
Importantly, I got my first proper job in the UK securing a role at an investment bank that every single one of my friends at Cambridge University wanted to work in, Goldman Sachs. I didn’t have a single connection in that world but it didn’t worry me, I knew I was resourceful and would get where I needed to go somehow. Ultimately, I had to network aggressively in order to get the job and in this article I tell you five of the top things I did as far as networking is concerned.
I know there are girls out there who have come out of university and think they can get a job better suited to their education and how hard they work but they’re not quite sure how. This article is for you.
Above all else, building a cache of contacts helps your career in direct and indirect ways. These are my first five pointers on networking:
“You can make more friends in two months by becoming interested in other people than you can in two years by trying to get other people interested in you.” Dale Carnegie
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For 2 years until early 2014 I wrote a weekly personal finance and business column for Malawi's leading media house, The Times Group. The target is middle-class, working African women.
This is a reproduction of the articles that appeared in the weekend edition of Malawi News.