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Ashley Freeth

By Ashley Freeth

Networking in a Digital Age

Tue, January 17, 2017

young professionals networking event

The networking landscape has changed in recent years. When we think of networking, we often think of formal gatherings and cocktail receptions with colleagues and strangers alike, trying to muster enough small talk to leave an impression on a potential business partner. Working to expand your professional network can be challenging, but going into your next networking event with a strategy in mind and maximizing your digital presence can help yield better results.

At United Way, we offer a multitude of both traditional and non-traditional networking opportunities that are specifically tailored to help young professionals reach their networking goals. Whether they involve meeting five new people in person or connecting with five new people on LinkedIn, test out these strategies at one of our upcoming events or online:

  • Define your goals - Who do you want to meet? Why are you at this particular event? Answering these questions before you go to your next event will help you narrow your focus and clarify your purpose. If you are looking to meet other young professionals, discuss shared interests and hear from inspiring leaders, United Way’s Young Leader Speaker Series – hosted jointly by Project NEXT and Women's Initiative Next Generation (WING) – is the event for you.
  • Expand your social network - Leveraging your social networks is a great way to connect with others and share your experience, skills and knowledge. Always keep your LinkedIn profile current and share content that best resonates with your personal brand. Connect with us or the Women’s Leadership Initiative (WLI) LinkedIn pages for news and updates on how to expand your social network.
  • Get active in the community - If you have a wide range of interests and passions, join Project NEXT at our Young Professionals Across Philadelphia event. Engage with a variety of nonprofits and young people committed to making a difference and learn about a multitude of volunteer opportunities. Volunteerism is a great way to meet new people while expanding your professional experience portfolio. Search United Way’s volunteer portal for other opportunities specific to your interests, location and goals.
  • Bringing together individuals who share a passion for giving is one way that we are building stronger communities every day. When civic-minded professionals are able to meet and help one another grow and succeed, our community succeeds.