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March 2021 : Building Your Network During a Pandemic

By Sandra Mohr, OWA Communications and Website Committee
Building Your Network During A Pandemic

"Networking is an investment in yourself. It takes time and when done correctly can yield great results for years to come." — Diane Helbig

Have you found it more challenging to network during the pandemic? Are you feeling a little less connected to people and projects as we are social distancing? We are all figuring out how to navigate through our new normal and small outreaches to our connections can help us reconnect, share information, and help support each other.

Spending time nurturing your current network and building new contacts can help you feel more connected during these unusual times. Maintaining and creating new relationships can help provide new opportunities and ways of looking at situations that can become beneficial for your career. When our network expands, we are more likely to gain a larger view of the world and become more empathetic for situations that are not like our own and potentially help us feel a stronger connection to our community.

Many of us normally network in our offices, professional meetings, and in our communities. It is likely that the remote and socially distanced environment has changed how you connect, but technology allows you to intentionally seek out opportunities to check in or offer value to others while strengthening your relationships. Suggestions for networking remotely could include:

A common theme many of us are facing is feeling that we don't have enough time to get everything done, and adding networking to your day might feel overwhelming. Setting aside 10 to 15 minutes a day can provide great opportunities to strategically reach out and connect with people to help strengthen your network and help you feel more connected to others.

As an OWA member, there are many ways to virtually get involved, give back, and expand your network. Some of the volunteer membership opportunities include joining an advisory group, serving on an OWA committee, taking part in a quarterly book club discussion, creating a "Food for Thought" video, or sharing a One-Minute Inspiration. If you'd like to connect with me and learn more about networking within the OWA, please reach out to me at . I look forward to connecting and learning from you in the future!

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