Building a network of contacts is an essential aspect of any career out there. Whether you are a therapist, doctor, or barista, you need to get to know different people to extend your network and make new social connections. 

The concept of networking usually gets understood in the form of a physical environment. You meet new people in events, in the office, or outdoors in general. This is pretty understandable if you work from outside of your house.

But what about remote workers? Do they not meet new people from the field and enhance their network?

This is not the case. While it is quite understandable for people to think remote workers are isolated, it does not have to be like that. In case there might be situations where remote working is better for networking than the face-to-face environment. It is just something people are not yet familiar with.

But of course, since the environment is different, you might not be familiar with how to create a network as a remote worker. Today we are here to tell you how, so, without further ado, let’s see how!

Why Building a Network is Important While Working from Home?

You might understand how building a network is important in general, but you also need to understand why building a network is important while working from home.

The answer is simple. You get to see lots of people while you are working in a face-to-face environment, and it takes less effort to connect with them. In fact, you might be networking in face-to-face environments without even noticing. It is not a bad thing, though.

The more, the merrier. 

In the remote working environment, it is a little more complicated. Please note that there is nothing challenging or difficult about networking while working remotely. You just need to follow a different route to do so, which might not look obvious in the beginning. Once you gain familiarity with what you need to do, it will be as easy as pie.

Coming back to the importance of building a network in the remote work environment, you will always need people to support you, be there for you, brainstorm when needed, and become friends in general. You should keep in mind that networking is not only a way that helps you open professional opportunities. While it is one benefit of networking, there is always more than that which would help you grow both in career terms and as a human being.

Tips for Building Business Relationships and Remote Networking

Up to now, you have understood why networking is important in the remote work environment. But how will you do that? We mentioned how the strategies differ in the remote work environment in comparison to the face-to-face environment, so there are a couple of things you might want to know.

The following are some of the best tips to network while working remotely.

1. Attend Virtual Events

People pursuing a career are often familiar with the concept of professional events. The context of those events can change for sure, but the fact that they are perfect for networking cannot be overlooked.

Why not benefit from them while working remotely? There are many online events in various fields, and the only thing you need to do is follow them (you can find them through professional social media channels such as LinkedIn and Slack). Once you find a suitable event for you, you might want to ask questions to people, say hi to them, and be involved in general.

2. Use Professional Social Media Apps

Professional social media apps can be a very useful tool to connect with your colleagues and other people from your field in general. In fact, social media apps for careers can be the coffee station of remote workers. You can share your ideas, tell what you think to people, and even send a message to someone you want to link with asking for a cup of coffee.

3. Connect with your Alumni Community

One way of mastering the use of social media apps is to connect with your alumni community. Networking with alumni is one of the best networking methods in general, and social media makes it easier than ever. You can directly message them, send an e-mail, or join an event they are joining to connect.

4. Host an Online Event

It is a great way to connect with people by joining events, so why not host one? If you have an idea that you would like to perform in the form of an online event, then do not hesitate to invite people over. Even if you have a small circle, that’s where networking starts! Most people would recommend starting networking with the circle you already have, so hosting an event would be an excellent way to do so. You can get the chance to connect with your circle’s circle, and so on.

5. Do not be too Distant

It might be challenging to be sincere while remotely networking. You still would want to keep the professionalism but remember that you are not sending an email to your boss. Remember, you are not only networking for career opportunities. You are also networking because you would want to get to know different people with the same or different career interests.

You are trying to bond with another human being, and it is okay to be a little bit sincere!

Coworking Space Benefits for Remote Workers: What Do They Offer?

Building a network

For remote workers, it might be challenging to be away from human interaction. That is where coworking spaces come in handy. In the simplest terms, coworking spaces are areas where people come together to connect, build new ideas, work, and share experience. The idea is quite similar to networking and socializing while working on one’s career.

A coworking space can be anywhere where multiple people come to work. The idea of remote working is the ability to work wherever you would like, and why not that place would be a coworking space where you are still with other people? Besides, sharing a common office would decrease the costs of renting one.

Being around other people working can increase your productivity, offer more networking opportunities. Moreover, you can have access to shared services and facilities in the coworking spaces that you wouldn’t have otherwise. Lastly, the situation of “remote working isolation,” which will be described in the following section, would be reduced.

Remote Working Isolation Is A Thing

One common concern about remote working is isolation. Since there is an absence of physical human interaction in general, people are afraid that they will be too distant from other people and feel isolated.

Indeed, being physically away from people in the workplace can cause a sense of loneliness, resulting in remote work isolation. In fact, remote work isolation is the number one concern for all remote workers. Remote work isolation can be a severe issue that causes loss of productivity, motivation, inability to work, and decreased job satisfaction.

Additionally, those symptoms of remote work isolation typically concern both employee and employer. Nobody would want to lose their motivation in the middle (or at any point) of their career paths. You might want to learn how to deal with such emotions and conditions.

While this is the case, remote networking and connecting with people carry even more significance. You can use the methods we mentioned to stay in touch with people in the remote environment and enhance your network even more.

Moreover, coworking spaces create an excellent environment to decrease the chances of being victims of remote work isolation. Even having people around you would make you feel less lonely and increase your productivity level. It is important to mind your mental health while working, which is something many people tend to overlook in those terms.

What are some cool events to organize for a coworking space?

There can be many different events to organize for a coworking space, including virtual happy hours, daily morning meetings prior to work (can be themed), virtual breakfasts, demo days, and monthly classes.

Is remote networking possible?

Yes, remote networking is possible. Many remote workers succeed in having an enhanced network. Networking does not have to be always about meeting new people physically, and with some methods, a remote worker can also have a great network.

What are virtual happy hours? Are they beneficial?

Virtual happy hours are the same thing as regular happy hours, but people meet online with Zoom or other applications instead of being physically together. The idea is still the same, to have fun and connect with people.

What are the most popular games and activities for remote workers?

In general, games that can be held online and still be as entertaining as they would be in the physical environment are popular games for remote workers. Those games include video charades, two truths, and a lie, never have I ever, virtual pub crawls, and photo channels.

Originally posted on January 28, 2022 @ 8:45 pm