There's an excellent post on Design*Sponge today about networking (it's aimed at designers, but the informations is quite general). In it, guest poster Sara Rosso identifies four types of networkers:
The Trendsetter: is curious and very up-to-date, and spends a great amount of time consuming and filtering information. They will be the first ones to tell you about a new idea or resource or tell you if someone else is already doing it.
The Guru: is an expert in a particular subject or subjects with in-depth knowledge at their fingertips and can serve as a source or give an expert opinion when needed.
The Node: is well-connected with other people and groups. Maybe this person doesn’t have any direct answers for you, but they probably know the right person who does, and is willing to pass along your need/request to help you get an answer.
The Giver: is generous with their time, information and opinions and can serve as a person to give you excellent feedback across a variety of subjects. They are interested in helping your cause, teaching you something, or giving feedback on something you’re working on, and they are generous contacts to have.
Some people are going to be all four, or a combination of a few, or just one type of networker. What type are you? Knowing this may help you focus on and develop those skills, and make you more comfortable in networking situations.
And of course, knowing what type the people are in your network will help you figure out who to call when you're looking for specific information.
Intern. Editorial assistant. Assistant editor. Associate editor. Etc. It's a clear path, but not one you necessarily have to take. As the examples in this Ed2010 article show, if you have experience in another field and want to get into magazines, you can. The trick is to communicate how your skills are transferable and that you "get" magazines. And perhaps your non-magazine experience is a bonus that will make you stand out among all the other applicants.
You definitely need a business card. And you should definitely carry some with you wherever you go. But you should most definitely not hand them out indiscriminately.
In an interview with WalletPop, Chris Brogan points out that handing out your business card before you've engaged with someone — i.e. have had a conversation with him/her — is pointless. How is that person going to know whether they want to do business with you? What reason do they have to contact you? "Don't collect them just to collect them," Brogan says. "There's no value in collecting business cards."
The Canadian Living Journalism Prize just got better. The two grand prizes now each include a paid 12-week internship, worth approximately $6,500. That's about $13 an hour. I'm not holding my breath, but let's hope this inspires other magazines to start paying their interns.
Time for another infamous Ed Happy Hour: Join us for a night of mixin' and mingling, and get to know others in the magazine biz. From student to intern to senior to EIC, everyone is welcome — we're a friendly group! Bring your business cards, your magazines, your questions and your beefs. And $5 to enter our Chat-with-an-Editor Raffle: you could win dinner with Chatelaine Senior Editor Rebecca Caldwell (visit Ed2010.com for details). And bring all your editor friends!! The usual time and place: Wednesday, October 14, 2009 6:00pm - 9:00pm The Duke of York, 2nd floor conservatory (go upstairs to the back). 39 Prince Arthur Ave. (near the Bedford exit of St. George subway station) RSVP to the event on the Ed Toronto Facebook page. Oh, and if you don't know: Ed2010 ("ed twenty-ten") is a purely volunteer networking group and website for aspiring editors who are looking to reach their dream magazine jobs. I am the Canadian Director. And if you would like to join our email list, please send us a note: toronto [at] ed2010 [dot] com.
My heart goes out to all the editors at the Transcon publications who will have to hunt harder for contributors, or have to take on extra work to meet their deadlines. It's a horrible position to be in. Editors are the writers' connection to a magazine, and often the writers' biggest advocates, and unfortunately they are the ones who will hurt most from this action.
Transcon editors, how do you plan to cope? Do you think it will affect you much? Have you had any writers speak to you about the boycott yet? Have there been discussions in the office to develop a strategy? Will you be taking on more work yourself?
Non-Transcon editors, chime in too: how would you cope?
Corinna vanGerwen is a freelance editor and writer. She has worked as senior editor at Style at Home, senior design editor at Cottage Life and is the former Canadian Director of Ed2010. She has also held the position of operations manager at a boutique PR agency, where she handled strategic planning and daily operations.