Networking skills

Is networking a skill needed by public servants?

Yes it is. The Integrated Leadership System identifies networking under the capability Cultivates productive working relationships. For Executive Level positions, the sub-capability Nurtures internal and external relationships, is expressed, in part, as ‘Builds and sustains relationships with a network of key people internally and externally.’

What’s the value of networking with colleagues?

Networking within your organisation:

  • Builds your visibility so that people know who you are.
  • Gives access to opportunities such as temporary assignments.
  • Enables you to build alliances.
  • Gives access to inside information thereby building your knowledge power.
  • Enables you to make exchanges and build reciprocity.
  • Taps a wider circle of potential referees.
  • Provides opportunities to help others.

Networking outside your organisation:

  • Does all of the above.
  • Enables you to build relationships with people who have an interest in your organisation (clients and stakeholders).
  • Provides opportunities to represent your organisation.
  • Provides avenues for increasing your understanding of stakeholders’ business.
Where do you find networking opportunities?
  • In-house social events.
  • Communities of interest.
  • Professional associations.
  • In-house promotional events.
  • Meetings, committees, working groups.
  • APSC forums
  • Business and community functions.
  • Service club meetings.
  • Chambers of Commerce.
  • Forums offered by universities.
  • Special interest groups.
Dr Ann Villiers, career coach, writer and author, is Australia’s only Mental Nutritionist specialising in mind and language practices that help people build flexible thinking, confident speaking and quality connections with people.