EACE Blog contribution by Mary Alice Barrows, Assistant Director at William Paterson University of New Jersey
Credit: Mary Alice Barrows
We’ve all heard the phrase “It’s not what you know, it’s who you know”. In the age of Google, building one’s personal brand online and building a network of professionals has become essential. Building that professional network, however, can be a daunting task. Social media has opened up a brand new set of ways that we can do this. One of those methodologies is taking part in twitterchats.
The 411: What Is A Twitterchat?
A twitterchat is a conversation that takes place via Twitter. It’s a popular way to connect an audience to a topic of shared interest utilizing a single hashtag to share your thoughts and participate in conversation with one another.
Twitterchats cover nearly every topic conceivable and generally take only an hour of your time. They usually use a basic question and answer system and host a guest (often a professional in the field of the twitterchat’s topic). By connecting you to multiple people within a topic of one’s interest – Twitterchats open the door to building new relationships. Additionally, these new Twitter relationships can transfer over to a new LinkedIn connection and expand your network further on a different social platform.
From Career Development Perspective On Twitterchats
As career professionals, we encourage our students to reflect and research their passions, fields of interest or industries of choice. Furthermore, we challenge them to engage, connect and build relationships with professionals in those chosen fields of interest. Twitterchats are the perfect platform to do all of the above.
In short, twitterchats can be a vehicle for students to:
○ Twitter chats allow students to showcase their expertise on a topic and puts skills or talents on display.
○ Simply by following a Twitterchat students can gain key knowledge from experts in the field.
- Make Connections and Build Relationships:
○ Even by asking questions, students open the doors of opportunity and build potential connections (even mentors).
- Build Their Personal Brand:
○ By making yourself visible through knowledge sharing, students begin to put their imprint on the web
Don’t Be Shy – Join In!
Let me get a bit personal. When I first started tweetchatting, I was very concerned that I wouldn’t add any value to the chats I was taking part in. After watching a chat or two, I began to become comfortable and soon began to take part.
Once you start to jump in, you find yourself immersed in conversation through the sharing of ideas and connecting with others interested in the same topics and fields as yourself. It’s a learning and sharing experience all-in-one.
I invite you to join us for our next #EACE Twitter chat on February 10, 2015 at 12pm.
For more information on some additional twitterchats and resources for students (or you), here’s some helpful information.
Tweetchat Websites and Resources
- #MillennialTalk (Tuesdays at 8 p.m. EST)
- #LinkedinChat (Tuesdays at 8 p.m. EST)
- #Internpro (Monday’s at 9 p.m. EST)
- #CareerServChat (Thursdays at 9 p.m. EST)
Mary Alice Barrow
Mary Alice Barrows is an Assistant Director at William Paterson University of New Jersey where she acts as member of the employer relations team and works directly with undergraduate, graduate students, and alumni from the Cotsakos College of Business & The College of Arts, & Communications. Prior to working at WPUNJ, Mary Alice served as the Career Development Specialist at King’s College, in Wilkes-Barre, PA. Mary Alice received her Master of Science Degree in Higher Education and Bachelor of Arts Degree in History/Secondary Education from Marywood University in Scranton, PA. You can connect with Mary Alice via LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/in/maryalicebarrows Or via Twitter @Mabarrows