Global fintech and funding innovation ecosystem

7 online networking tips for CEOs

MT | Orianna Rosa Royle | Aug 12, 2021

Online networking tips - 7 online networking tips for CEOs

MT Asks: How do you find and maintain a network solely through a screen?

Now that the government has lifted the order to work from home and the summer holidays draw to a close, many firms are eyeing up an office return in September.  But as many workers and leaders alike have woken up to how little work-life balance they had prior to the pandemic, the new world of work is looking flexible.

Major firms have made it clear that they will not be demanding that bums are on seats five days a week from 9am to 5pm, with many launching hybrid working policies. As a result, it’s unlikely that people’s “in-office” days will always align and so networking will always require an element of digital know-how.   So being able to find and maintain a network through a screen is vital. With that in mind, we asked leaders for the best networking tips they have learnt in the past 16 months of working remotely.

Vicky Matthews, co-founder, Pink Spaghetti

Whichever mediums you choose, whether LinkedIn, Facebook, Clubhouse or Twitter, it’s only going to work if you commit to it. People need to get to know the real you so they can decide if they want to work or connect with you. You have to be active to build relationships: it’s not going to work if you dip in and out half-heartedly. If you’re limited on time, choose the one platform that works best for you and focus on that.

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Forget the hard sell – think carefully about the benefits you can bring to situations. You don’t have to take part in every discussion or reply to every post by someone you admire. If you’re not contributing something useful, it’s OK to take a back seat. Keep your contributions polite and helpful and people will associate your name with positivity.

Ashley Friedlein, chief executive, Guild

On social media platforms like LinkedIn, which is considered a must for B2B networking, it’s becoming increasingly challenging to cut through the noise and make meaningful connections. Being active, and more importantly ‘useful’ in niche communities is increasingly important when building a network. In these smaller communities of ‘practice, purpose or passion’, there is often more of a focus and a higher level of shared knowledge and expertise.

Personalisation and intimacy aren’t always replicable on larger social media channels. In my experience, being generous, sharing knowledge and advice, demonstrating expertise, connecting ideas and people and showing that you have a passion for what you do ensures you are far more memorable. After all, what is the point of developing a LinkedIn profile with thousands of connections you don't actually know when your time could be spent forging fewer, more valuable relationships?

Vonnie Alexander, executive and team coach

Networking is really one human being connecting with another. You don’t need to be selling something to network. Be curious, open and ready to learn. It is always better to go into a network situation thinking about what you can give rather than gain. People will always remember how you made them feel, and that’s true online as well as offline.

Try:  Welcome to! Free Listing and Networking Opportunity for Canadian Fintechs

 Be intelligent with your LinkedIn networking. If you know someone or have recently met them, request to connect. If you don’t know them but want to, be explicit about why. Avoid random, wordless requests. And if you know people with common ground, introduce them. It’s not about vested interest. Then don’t forget to join in the discussion rather than just observing. Give others a reason to notice and engage with you. Find your voice and use it online. The worst that can happen is that nobody reads it, the best, it resonates with someone.

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