This chapter focuses on the importance networking. Networking is not about schmoozing one's way to the top, but about establishing connections with people with common interests. Developing a network is essential in science for exchanging something, such as information, ideas, or favors. But networking is a form of "social exchange": it involves interactions rather than a one-way flow of favors. It is important to identify general patterns and understand and interpret specific interactions. The balance in communication flow fluctuates while progressing in career. There are several excellent guides for women in the sciences and engineering that cover a broad range of skills that can make a person effective, and several sources of good information directed specifically toward faculty members at institutions where research is important. Establishing a sense of trust-so critical to networking relationships-takes time and is explicit rarely. The longer the interval between specific exchanges, the more trust there is in the relationship. There is no evidence that professional networking is more difficult for women. The gender pattern for social contacts actually favors women since they tend to be more skilled at making social contacts, and are usually willing to put more effort into their relationships.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Social Sciences(all)