Thursday, March 24, 2016

Networking Opportunities

I don’t like the connotation of “networking,” That is, net-working. Sounds like a duty, instead of an opportunity. That being said, “networking” is necessary for a healthy career. So I prefer to network like Immanuel Kant.

Kant said to never view people as means-to-an-end; but rather, respect them as autonomous agents. Thus, the better view is not to engage people for what they can offer. Instead, engage everyone for who they are.

That means socializing without ulterior motives. Find something to appreciate in everyone. Listen to them. Really listen to them. We don’t learn anything from talking, because we know everything we have to say. Thus, the more we listen, the more we learn.

Use empathy when listening. Reasoning makes us smart, but empathy teaches us what reason cannot; viz. wisdom. Use feelings to understand others, and people will appreciate it.

Attend a lot of networking events. Loyola makes it easy, hosting many events. Attend one per week. While there, enjoy networking not as a means-to-an-end, but as an end-in-itself. And bring good vibes. It’s an opportunity to meet active, ambitious people—like you. Shake hands, introduce yourself, think less and listen more.

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