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Network Intentionally

In 2022, I set a goal for myself: to build a more diverse, robust network of women leaders in the life science industry.

 

I began this endeavor by reaching out to speakers in response to presentations I attended or authors of articles I read. After that, I began cold-calling people on LinkedIn, messaging people from both similar and dissimilar backgrounds from my own. Only about one in five people would respond to me and, after six months, I felt discouraged.

 

And then I received a response from "Lucy". Lucy and I were in the same industry but at different companies, in different states. What began as a few LinkedIn exchanges quickly became a budding peer-coaching relationship. Though we never met in person, Lucy and I started having monthly Zoom meetings filled with idea-sharing and learning. We discussed the challenges we face as women in the field and held each other accountable for development goals. We supported each other.

 

As luck would have it, Lucy was also part of the Women’s Business Leaders (WBL) group and nominated me to be a member. After several interviews, I got in and now I have this fantastic network of women who always respond.

 

This experience really highlighted for me the profound impact a single connection can have. In the pharmaceutical industry, in particular, a strong, diverse network holds significant power and can really set you up for success. Vendors can become clients, clients can become coworkers, and colleagues may connect you to big opportunities! If I had not stayed the course and continued to work to build my network, I never would have met Lucy and the WBL.

 

Key Take Away

Network intentionally! To begin cultivating your own network, I encourage you to explore LinkedIn for people in our industry and beyond. Look for individuals in specific roles or career paths that align with yours. Seek out leaders and learn how they have advanced in their positions. When connecting with others, find common ground, whether it’s through shared real-world experiences or role overlaps, and don’t hesitate to cold connect. Strike up conversations in person. You have the potential to build strong connections being at the right place at the right time.

 

 

 

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