Ask Jen

How to Network, Texas Exes Style

 

Hi Jen,

My husband is a member of Texas Exes and is seeking another job. He is a licensed civil engineer in TX—do you have suggestions on how to use the Texas Exes Career Network, especially in Austin?

Thank you,
New Networker

 

Dear New Networker,

I recommend searching the Texas Exes Career Network and the Texas Exes LinkedIn group to identify alumni for information sessions, which are one-on-one meaningful conversations. The LinkedIn group also has subgroups, so he could join multiple groups that meet his needs. Both are online databases and are not linked to in-person forums or meetings.

Your husband can search the databases for other civil engineers in Austin. However, I would recommend that he leave the geographical area open when searching the career network, since there are fewer contacts in it than LinkedIn. It doesn’t matter if a contact is living in another state, because that person has already agreed to talk with other alumni. She could share some wonderful nuggets of wisdom and then be willing to refer your husband to another contact in Texas. I’m constantly amazed at how well-connected our alumni are all over the world.

For in-person networking, I’d recommend local Texas Exes chapter events—specifically, the Texas Exes Austin Chapter. The chapter’s social events are a great place to meet and build relationships with other professionals. I have come to believe that wherever Longhorns gather, there’s a built-in trust and rapport between alumni, and they tend to talk about work and career at social gatherings.

The Austin chapter, like many others, sometimes offers networking and other professional events, so watch the chapter website for updates. If your husband is not receiving weekly emails specifically from his local chapter, then have him check his address for accuracy at his member profile.

Finally, the local business journal is a great resource. Texas Exes members have free access to 40 local Business Journals and Book of Lists. Few other resources provide the local insider scoop that business journals offer.

The local Metro Area Chamber of Commerce is another source for identifying professional groups, and they frequently hold networking events. And many professional associations are headquartered in Austin, as a quick Google search will show.

Here’s to happy networking,

Jen

Illustration by Ashley Solano

 

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