Accountants need to build strong professional networks, just as all other employees do when seeking career advancement. Because the skills that make someone a great networker are not necessarily the skills that make someone a top-notch accountant, it is sometimes frightening and difficult for accounting professionals to network effectively.

If you want to make networking easier for yourself to become better at building professional relationships and to overcome your worries, follow these key steps.

Understand the skills you have that make you a good networker

Networking isn’t just about meeting tons of strangers. That may be the perception from the outside, but that strategy won’t be very successful. To build the kind of professional network that advances your career, you need to make deeper connections. When you honestly assess your skills, you’ll likely see that you are a good listener and are capable of having in-depth conversations. This can give you more confidence to network in a way that works for you. Use those skills when talking to people in the right situation.

Talk about the right topics with the right people

Since accounting is your field, you likely know a lot about it and are able to have great conversations about the issues that matter in your industry. When you network, focus on talking with a small number of people who share your passion for particular topics so you can go beyond small talk and converse on subjects you care about. Sticking to those topics will also make you feel more comfortable. When you are more comfortable talking about a topic, your delivery will improve and the opinions you present will be stronger. Hopefully, you’ll become so immersed in interesting conversations, you’ll forget your fear of networking entirely.

Follow up and share your knowledge

You can feel more confident doing this by changing the way you look at the process. Instead of thinking about how the networking event could affect your career, think about how you’re helping others. If you had a great conversation about a sports team, use that as a lead in with your next LinkedIn message or email with your new connection. If you share a common enjoyment in cooking, pass along a recipe you think they would enjoy.

Work With a Top Staffing Agency in Westchester

You don’t have to build professional networks all on your own. Vanguard Staffing has a vast network of companies that turn to our staffing professionals for help with hiring. We can tap into our professional network to help you find a great accounting job. Reach out to us today to work with a top financial staffing agency in Westchester.