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Hate Networking? ChatGPT Can Make It Easier

08/02/2023
6 minutes

People in tech are finding ways to use ChatGPT to be more efficient in their jobs — and the AI can also help you fast-track your job search.

Networking can be tough, especially when you’re just starting out in your career and you’re still trying to get a sense of direction. Even if you have a general idea of where to start looking, outreach is time-consuming and it can be hard to know how to navigate interactions and turn a potential relationship into a successful one.

Fortunately, AI can help. Here are a few tips on how you can use ChatGPT to start networking like a pro. And if you haven’t used ChatGPT before, check out our Intro to ChatGPT course to learn the basics.

Level up your LinkedIn profile

LinkedIn is one of the best ways to connect with other professionals in your industry, and ChatGPT can help you improve your chances of getting noticed by the right people.

Learn something new for free

Your LinkedIn summary is your first impression with everyone who comes to your page. It helps to write a compelling story about yourself that could resonate with recruiters and hiring managers. If writing isn’t your strong suit, the good news is that ChatGPT can do most of the hard work for you. With a clear and detailed prompt, you can have the chatbot generate a polished summary that you can use as a first draft. For example, someone looking to change careers and find their first tech job could use a prompt like this:

I’m looking for my first job as a software engineer, and I’m optimizing my LinkedIn profile to include relevant keywords and resonate with other engineers and companies in the industry. Could you help me write an engaging LinkedIn summary to add to my profile? Please provide three options, with no more than two paragraphs each, based on the information below.

[insert relevant details and experience.]

You can also use this strategy when it comes time to write a cover letter or fine-tune your resume. HR professionals and recruiters often use AI to analyze profiles and resumes to weigh potential candidates, so including relevant keywords and experiences in your profile summary can help catch their attention. You could read through a bunch of job postings and add relevant skills to your summary manually, or you could leave it to ChatGPT.

It might take some finessing, but after experimenting with a few prompts, you can come up with several quality choices to work from. Then, it’s just a matter of tweaking and editing it so it’s accurate and feels authentic to you. If you need more of a breakdown of how to write a LinkedIn summary with ChatGPT, here are some helpful tips.

Learn how to break the ice

Initiating conversation can be awkward for many people, whether it’s face-to-face at a networking event or reaching out to someone who works your dream job on LinkedIn. And it can be even more difficult for people who are just starting out in their careers or looking for a new one and are coping with feelings of impostor syndrome.

For example, maybe you’re going to a networking event and you need a good elevator pitch — a brief summary of who you are and what you have to offer. Distilling your life story and experience into a concise sound bite is difficult. If you’re struggling to come up with an elevator pitch, just give ChatGPT the relevant details about your skills, experience, and desired outcomes, and let it do the wordsmithing for you. For instance, a prompt for someone looking for their first UX role might look something like this:

I’m a product marketer who taught myself to code, and I’m looking for a job as a UX Designer. Please help me craft an elevator pitch to use at networking events. I have eight years of experience helping brands deepen their understanding of their customers needs and preferences by conducting user research and creating buying personas. I know how to code with HTML, CSS, and JavaScript, and I’ve built several full-stack applications with MongoDB, Express, Angular, and Node.js. I’m currently looking for UX roles for ecommerce companies.

Here’s what ChatGPT returned for the prompt above.

It’s a little wordy, especially for an elevator pitch. Maybe ChatGPT doesn’t know what an elevator pitch means! With another prompt, we can ask ChatGPT to shorten the passage above and make it sound friendly and conversational:

Great start, but it’s a little long. Please rewrite the passage to be more compact and conversational, with no more than two or three sentences.

Here’s what ChatGPT returns for the prompt above:

Discover networking opportunities

ChatGPT can also help you come up with ways to meet other professionals and experts face to face. Just tell the chatbot what you’re looking for, and it’ll give you a list of options. For example, if you’re learning to code and want to know where you can turn for advice, you could use a prompt like this:

I’m trying to change careers and am feeling stuck. What are some ways I can get in front of people face-to-face and network? Please provide 3 ideas that I can do virtually.

Or if you’re a little further along in your coding journey and you’re looking to explore a specific niche, you could try something like:

I’m a game developer, and I’m looking for virtual events that’ll keep me up to date with the latest innovations in game development, popular tools and trends, and the overall state of the market. Where should I start looking?

It’s important to remember that ChatGPT isn’t always current (it doesn’t have any data after 2021), and it can make things up or get facts wrong. It’s on you to verify your results and make sure that the wording makes sense. Get creative and think of how you can harness ChatGPT to help you prepare for success.

For instance, if you’re attending an event, ChatGPT can fill you in with details on established speakers and relevant conversation starters to chat up other attendees. And if you’re presenting, ChatGPT can help you review and optimize your code — and even give you some ideas for how to structure your presentation.

As you can see, ChatGPT can help you come up with all kinds of networking materials, like introductory outreach messages for LinkedIn, icebreakers that help spark conversation and build rapport, and follow-up emails that help you stay in contact with your network. Check out our case study Write a Sales Outreach Email with ChatGPT to earn more.

It all comes down to the prompt you use and the human insight you bring to the results. AI tools are great, but they aren’t perfect. Check out our AI courses to learn more about how you can use AI tools to get ahead in your career, and if you’re curious to learn about how these systems work, we pull back the curtain in our course Intro to Large Language Models.

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