Teaching is a competitive field. If you want to succeed, you have to put yourself out there. With multiple online platforms for teaching cropping up, finding your footing can be challenging, especially when changing jobs. If you want to teach a different grade or try teaching at a higher level, contacts can help. It is the bitter truth, but knowing the right people is sometimes the best way to land a good job.
Also, sometimes you wish to have a dialogue or a brainstorming session with someone outside your colleagues. Someone who understands the nature of your work Networking helps you connect with leaders and other people in your industry. People who you can connect with for both professional and personal gain
Networking may be challenging for teachers who spend most of their time in school with students. Yet, it is not impossible, and here are a few tricks to try.
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Connect with your professors.
All the professors you had the privilege of getting your education from or working under are in school districts. Either they are professors there or in administration departments. It makes it a perfect idea for networking. Staying in contact with your professors is essential. You can call them to inquire about a teaching job in their district. It is one of the best ways to start your teaching career. Professors have contacts; even if you get a professor’s assistant job, it can work well for you.
Preparation is the key.
You must be prepared if you are actively looking for a job or a change. You cannot attend networking events, meet new people, and say, ‘Hey, I am a math teacher.’ It does not work like this anymore. You must sell yourself as a teacher. For instance, create a pitch that explains why you are the best math teacher. Maybe you use technology to your advantage, among other things. Lastly, always carry premium business cards. If you wish to start a teaching agency or want to work at a different school, you can share the cards with relevant people. That increases your chances of getting a callback.
Go to networking events.
Many teaching events are happening. Some happen on your school premises only, where you meet other teachers or people from the administrative department. It provides a perfect opportunity to connect with others and increase your chances of getting a better job or position.
For beginners, starting small works fine. They can work at a small school to gain experience and knowledge. It also exposes them to people who are at the top. It allows them to create connections, which can help them get better opportunities.
Experience is necessary to transform your career. If you do not have one, you can start volunteering and teaching. Teach at NGOs, free schools, or even volunteer as a teaching assistant. All this will bulk up your resume. All this matters when you sit down for interviews.
Do not be on the sidelines.
Do not be on the sidelines at any event or school function. You might stay on the sidelines if you are uncomfortable with a crowd of strangers or starting a conversation. But this will not allow you to connect with people or help you network. Therefore, mingle with people. Do not delay introducing yourself to people in any way.
Be on LinkedIn
Educational institutions are always on the lookout for better talent. To ensure you fall under their radar, be on LinkedIn. Today, every industry uses this platform to find better prospects. You can also use it to connect with people in the admissions departments or professors you admire. The trick is to use your LinkedIn account as a resume. Do not use it like other social media platforms. It is strictly for professional growth, so only use LinkedIn for professional growth.
Always follow up
Whenever you meet a lead, follow up. Whether you meet them at a PTA meeting or an event, follow up to maintain the connection.
Maybe you want to teach a higher grade at the university level or another prestigious school. Or you might want to start your own teaching business. All this is possible with the right contacts. Therefore, take networking seriously.