Social media isn't just a great way to connect with people you care about. These days, it can be used to establish and maintain professional networks within the field of public health, among many others, and this is something that grad students will want to consider. In this day and age, graduates need to ensure that they give themselves every possible opportunity to get ahead in their field, and social media is among the tools that they can use to achieve this. Knowing how to utilize social media doesn't only give students and graduates the chance to use it to their advantage, but it also shows them how this is done.
Most students will most likely already be using social media, which means that they will most likely be familiar with many of the more common options, such as Facebook or Twitter. In order to start utilizing this for professional reasons, individuals simply need to start branching out and utilizing a range of other tools that have been designed for precisely this purpose, without ignoring the uses that Twitter and Facebook have to offer.
Start Making Friends
Most professional businesses now have some sort of social presence, whether this is via an already established social media site, or through one of their own. Professionals in these cases have the opportunity to start reaching out to those individuals who they would usually have only interacted with on a professional level. By "making friends" through these social media sites, individuals can actually start socializing with these individuals on an entirely new level, therefore opening up certain networks that might not have been present before.
Those who are interested in the field of public health will need to start looking into networks that are aimed directly at these sorts of individuals. Graduates might find that the business they have recently started working with advertises their own social media site, while students might find that their university offers the same thing. By taking advantage of these opportunities, individuals can start connecting with other professionals, as well as other students, on a more personal basis.
Start Building Your Network
Once a person has started networking on social sites, it becomes easier to continue building this network. Public health students and graduates might find that they join a site in order to "friend" one person, and immediately start finding other people that they have gone to school with, or worked with during their fellowship. Over time, they will eventually start searching for acquaintances, professors, friends and family to add to their growing network of connections. What is more, individuals will start adding them as "friends" through their own connections of family, friends and colleagues and so this network will grow even wider.
Networking with Organizations
One of the great things about social networking sites is that they allow individuals to become associated with certain organizations, bringing them together with other, like minded individuals. Once individuals have associated themselves with organizations via social media sites, they are open to connecting with individuals who also belong to them. These organizations might pertain to businesses or educational groups, but they are great opportunities for individuals to get to know others who share their interests. See also 10 Awesome Informational Interview Questions.
Social networking sites are now allowing individuals to share content, whether this is news, creative writing or even jokes, through the medium of the net. This is allowing those who are involved in public health to share ideas on policies, the latest news within the industry and information about exciting job opportunities within the field. Some people prefer to share content and have others start discussions about the material, invoking debates on forums that could end up bringing a lot more people together. This sharing of information allows people to further expand their networks after drawing individuals who have found the information shared to be promising or valuable in nature.
What is more, social media allows individuals to read through the content shared by others, therefore giving them the opportunity to reach out to those with similar interests.
Take Your Profile Seriously
These days, more and more employers are turning to social media sites in order to get to know potential job candidates a bit better. While this is great news for those who actively market themselves via these sites, this isn't great news for those who don't use the sites with some caution. Individuals should ensure that they are happy enough to have their potential employers view their Facebook page, otherwise they might want to consider increasing their security settings so that only a specific number of people will be able to view their posts.
Getting To Know Your Options
Those who are looking to improve their networks via social media sites will need to make sure that they are aware of the options that are available to them, particularly within their chosen field. When it comes to fields such as public health, many of the professionals who are networking via social media are doing so via the more professional sites, such as those that are set up within organizations and businesses. It is up to individuals within this field to take some time to find out which sites will attract those professional with whom they will most likely want to network. See also Top 7 Ways to Get Your Foot in the Door in Global Public Health.
Professionals don't have to limit themselves to only a few social media sites; they can turn to a wide range to ensure that they develop the broadest possible network. It is important for individuals to keep in mind, however, that they will need to actively interact with their network in order to get something out of it. This means sharing content, making valuable and positive contributions and generally ensuring that they make the most of these opportunities as they are presented to them.
Social media sites are providing individuals with the opportunity to start networking with those in their field without even being in the same room, and this is something that is proving valuable to students, graduates and experienced professionals within the field.