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8 tips to grow your professional network

Growing your professional network is something that almost all physicians want to do. Networking is vital for career advancement yet women are often disadvantaged in their access.

We know that putting yourself out there can feel daunting. That’s why we asked our community for their top networking tips.

1) Go to conferences

2) Don’t be afraid to ask

3) Engage with professional societies

4) Be yourself

5) Collaborate

6) Find a mentor

7) Don’t give up

1) Go to conferences

Conferences are a great opportunity to meet like-minded people that you know you’ll have something in common with. Preparation beforehand can help too – think about what you’re going to do and who you want to interact with. Many conferences also have social events which could be a great place to start – you never know who you could be sitting next to!

Go to conferences! Had a random conversation with @ditchhaporia on the bus at #WorldHeartSummit in Geneva last night on
⭐️ making connections
⭐️ supporting other women
⭐️ wearing the right shoes!

— Sheila Liu Klassen (@sheilaklassen) May 22, 2022

2) Get on Twitter

Social media in medicine is commonly used to share information, gain knowledge, network, and advocate for patients. The pairing of social media with healthcare has also been shown to be very successful. Joining this well-established platform will undoubtedly help you connect with people around the world. Tip: following hashtags like #MedTwitter and #WIM could be a good place to start!

Get on twitter!
Met so many like-minded people, men and women! The connections you make on twitter and the ones you will meet at meetings/conferences, to reinforce collaborations. And friendships. Never underestimate the value of good friendships in your professional networks.

— Aaysha Cader (@aayshacader) May 22, 2022

3) Don’t be afraid to ask

The worst someone can do is say no. Stand up tall, (do a mental power pose or two) and ask! You got this.

Don’t be afraid or shy to ask:
Ask to meet them during a meeting, ask to have a call with them, ask for people that you admire to give you their professional advice. If they don’t answer to your call, it’s fine! But knock as many “doors” as you wish

— Julia Grapsa (@JGrapsa) May 22, 2022

4) Engage with professional societies

Professional associations can be one of the best ways to learn what’s going on and access new opportunities. You know that you’ll have shared interests with fellow physicians to be able to have conversations with them.

Engage in the professional societies: larger ones (AHA, ACC,etc.) but also the smaller subspec. societies (@SVM_tweets, @SCAI @HFSA @ASE360, others) which are perfect for getting engaged, networking. contributing, and having an impact. Many Orgs have early career committees.

— Heather L Gornik (@heatherlgornik) May 22, 2022

5) Be yourself

Research shows that your identity influences the networks that people will develop. Make sure that wherever you network you take your whole and true self so that you develop networks you want to be part of.

Be authentic.
Figure and do it your own way and at your own pace. Rephrased: What’s good for the goose may not be good for the gander!

— Hiteshi KC Chauhan (@HiteshiKc) May 22, 2022

6) Collaborate

Successful networking involves shared, mutually beneficial interactions. Seek out and share opportunities where you can work together.

I reach out and invite people to collaborate on my team’s research / manuscripts and make sure I reciprocate professionally when people invite me to collaborate on their research.

— Harriette Van Spall, MD MPH (@hvanspall) May 23, 2022

7) Find a mentor

Being targeted with your networking efforts can help to ensure you are successful. Identify physicians in your field that could act as a mentor for you and approach them. If you want to find a mentor, or be a mentor, the 2023 Escalator Awards open for application submissions in mid-August 2022!

Know what you want, identify mentors in your field and those who have a trajectory of helping and promoting mentees. Reach out to them. Realize your limitations,
If working on a project, do not overpromise or underdeliver.

— Anju Bhardwaj MD FACC (@docbhardwaj) May 24, 2022

8) Don’t give up

There are endless opportunities for you to grow your network. If your first attempt doesn’t go to plan, learn from it, and try again.

1) Identify your area of interest then reach out to experts who can sponsor or mentor u
2) If u don’t succeed once or fail, try again..the road to success isn’t straight

— MIЯVΛƬ #WIC (@mirvatalasnag) May 23, 2022

Want to participate in the conversation? Read more tips and send in your own by clicking on “Read replies” below

What are your top tips for women physicians wanting to grow their professional networks?#WomenInMedicine #MedTwitter

— Women as One (@WomenAs1) May 22, 2022