Networking is an essential part of building wealth – Armstrong Williams
Humans are social creatures. It is in our nature to seek a sense of belonging or identity within a particular group or groups brought about through social means. So what is networking? Through my studies of business, networking refers to the process of establishing a mutually beneficial relationship with other business people and potential clients and/or customers. As my university studies extended beyond the 3 year mark, it was now the perfect time to commence building my professional networks for my graduate years.
As mentioned in my previous blog, my travels to Melbourne in July proved an excellent opportunity to extend my networks interstate and nation-wide. This occasion was a chance to represent the university alongside the USQ Students In Free Enterprise (SIFE) group, at the SIFE national conference. Along with the chance to network with fellow university students Australia-wide, several industry experts and organisation representatives attended the conference, forming the judging panel for the competition.
On the flight back from Melbourne, I decided to put further into practice my newly acquired networking tips, through confirming my student membership with the Greater Springfield Chamber of Commerce. After attending several networking evenings and breakfast events, I had met a vast variety of the Chamber’s members, with their backgrounds inclusive of IT, finance, accounting and real-estate. These events gave me the opportunity to gain perspectives of real-world practice in a number of disciplines – with some members even sharing tips on their days at university.
With 2012 marking significant growth for the Chamber of Commerce, I was also able to meet several key figures relevant to the Greater Springfield region. The University of Southern Queesland’s Springfield campus was home to a networking event by which Vice-Chancellor Jan Thomas shared her vision for the campus and its role within the rapidly developing Greater Springfield region.
More recently, I attended an event with the Chamber for the official book-launch of Maha Sinnathamby – the inspirational innovator who founded the Greater Springfield area. At this event Maha detailed several triumphs and hardships throughout his life – spanning from his early days in Malaysia, through to his travels and settlement in Australia. The central theme of his speech was consistent with the title of his book – Stop Not Till The Goal is Reached.
One message in particular I took from Maha’s speech was that the darkest night brings the brightest dawn. He spoke of this in relation to the sleepless nights he faced throughout the turbulent times past, and how overcoming the most impossible obstacles bestow the greatest reward.
This goes to show, no matter what you study or where you are in your journey through life, networking is an essential part of building wealth. Whether such wealth takes the form of money, knowledge, education or inspiration, every opportunity is a good opportunity to network.