Nearly every professional understands that networking is an essential career strategy, but for healthcare providers, it can be easier said than done. With your primary focus on patient care, it’s all too easy to get caught up in your busy routine and forget to do much networking outside of your workplace. However, nurturing a network of likeminded professionals across the medical community can benefit your career in many ways.
“Whether or not you are actively searching, networking can help you gain perspective on larger industry trends,” says Alexandra MacDougall, an Account Executive within ES Healthcare, a division of The Execu|Search Group. “This can help you set career goals, keep your skillset and knowledgebase sharp, and gain exposure to different opportunities in your field. Plus, you’ll meet a ton of new contacts along the way! They may even become good friends or new colleagues in the future.”
Interested in boosting your networking efforts this year? Continue reading for our top networking tips for healthcare providers!
Attend industry-specific events
From alumni events to industry-specific conferences, attending events can be a gamechanger when it comes to expanding your network and knowledgebase. “There are a variety of events you can attend where you’ll meet like-minded healthcare providers looking to connect,” says Alexandra. “Just be sure to choose events with topics and speakers that interest you.” When attending, be sure to introduce yourself to other attendees, ask good questions, and exchange contact info. For more networking tips, read also: 5 Ways To Leave A Good Impression At Networking Events
Whether you are a nurse, physician, social worker, or allied health professional, most healthcare roles are represented by a professional association or society. Being part of one of these can give you access to more events and resources for career advancement.
Be active on social media
These networking tips have always been important, but today, social media makes them even more critical! “Social media has changed the way we network over the years,” explains Alexandra. “In addition to meeting in-person, social media allows you to make connections from any location. To expand their reach, many healthcare facilities are turning to platforms like LinkedIn and Facebook to hire and connect with talent. Unfortunately, many job seekers have been slow to adapt and are missing out on opportunities as a result.” Read also: 3 Reasons Why All Health Professionals Need LinkedIn
Donating your time or your medical expertise is great way to expand your network while giving back to your community. This is especially true if you tend to shy away from more formal networking events. “Volunteering can introduce you to new connections in a more relaxed environment,” says Alexandra. “Since you already share an interest in the organization, networking in this situation might feel more natural. It might also help you form more meaningful connections.”
Consider contract or per diem work
Another excellent networking strategy is through contract or per diem work. Whether you want to pick up some extra shifts or are looking for more scheduling flexibility, these opportunities give you exposure to different practice settings and different locations. This, in turn, opens the door to new experiences, which allow you to form unique professional relationships and collaborate with a wide range of healthcare professionals.