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In most countries, people who know and trust you are the ones who open doors for you. The way in which trust is established and connections are made may differ from culture to culture. In Canada, networking means developing a broad list of contacts and relationships and leveraging them for mutual benefit, for career development and advancement. People you meet may offer you job leads, advice or information and can introduce you to other influential people.

When we are immersed in our own culture, we may be unaware of the invisible threads that connect us to other people and support each step we take. It takes time, effort and persistence for newcomers to find the inroads and build the connections that will establish them in their new country.

One of the most valuable contributions of The Mentoring Partnership is that it opens doors to newcomers through the mentors’ understanding of the social norms of networking, and through their own professional and personal networks.

This section will give you some ideas on how to work together during your mentoring relationship on expanding the mentee’s network.

Together you can 
  • discuss how professional connections get established and nurtured in each of your countries.
  • discuss the importance of networking, its benefits and limitations.
  • review some do’s and don’ts of networking; for example, ask a contact for advice and information, but not for a job; think of networking as a two-way street and consider what the mentee may have to offer now or in the future.