Networking. Aaaah! It can feel so smarmy and junior leaguey. But it’s so totally necessary for Industrial Designer survival if we don’t want to be CAD monkeys until our paws are frozen with arthritis.
So any suggestions on how to meet useful people outside of the format of school/job? Not even “important” CEO types, or even Industrial Designers necessarily. And I don’t mean MySpace or Friendster (as if we use those things anyway!..awkward silence)
Just general tips on some where to find fun/interesting/applicable people, places, activities.
Linked in is a professional networking site. A very valuable tool, but requires an upgraded package to reach out to those you want to contact who are not “linked in” to you. So that said, get on it and get as many people you respect professionally to link in with you. It’s pretty cool to see how little it takes to get in touch with people.
I have hooked up with tons of designers through boards, then MSN, AIM, Skype. I think you can just get on a board with great people and post. You can also just email the guys you admire and may be surprised at finding responses sometimes.
The new version of Coroflot (launch date July 15) will have a ‘networking’ function included. It won’t be as robust as LinkedIn, but it will allow users to create links to other profiles, and will display those links. Ultimately you’ll need to reach out to those people directly to establish more of a connection. Email, IM, events, etc are all good methods.
Maybe we’ll also host Core77/Coroflot Meet Ups from time to time. Is that a good idea?