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  • The Open University

Business Fundamentals: Effective Networking

Learn how to build and sustain your network to enhance your professional relationships and open up career opportunities.

78,280 enrolled on this course

  • Duration

    4 weeks
  • Weekly study

    3 hours

Networking is a fundamental skill, which will help you take control of your career. This free online course introduces the principles of networking as a fundamental skill to help develop your personal brand in the world of work.

Build your network and personal brand online and in the real world

You will craft, and receive feedback on, an elevator pitch, a short statement about your role and talents. You will learn how to analyse the value of your connections, whether you are looking for a new job or seeking ways of being more effective in your current position. The course will also cover strategies for self-presentation, keeping in touch with your connections and ensuring that your networking relationships are based on mutual benefit and trust.

As well as honing your interpersonal skills in essential areas such as giving and seeking information, the course will cover the fundamentals of creating and managing your digital presence for networking on social media platforms such as LinkedIn and Facebook.

Develop fundamental business and finance skills

This course has been developed by The Open University Business School – a pioneering institution that is triple accredited by AMBA, EQUIS and AACSB.

It is one of eight from The Open University, designed to help you gain fundamental business and financial skills, including communication, networking, relationship building, project management, personal financial planning and management, investment and financial services.

You can complete this course as part of one of these two programs:

Business Fundamentals: four courses, which will boost your employability and effectiveness at work, and enable you to earn a FutureLearn Award.

Business and Finance Fundamentals: eight courses; holders of FutureLearn Certificates of Achievement for all eight courses can earn 30 UK credits towards The Open University Business School’s BA in Business Management by passing a linked Open University assessment module (requiring separate OU registration and fee).

What topics will you cover?

  • Nature and benefits of networking
  • Barriers to networking and how to overcome them
  • Frameworks for self-assessment and communicating professional strengths and interests
  • Interpersonal skills including giving and receiving feedback, listening and using appropriate body language
  • Online communication in a professional context
  • Fundamentals of brand equity as applied to individuals
  • Monitoring, evaluation and planning for improving the mutual value of networking activity

Learning on this course

On every step of the course you can meet other learners, share your ideas and join in with active discussions in the comments.

What will you achieve?

By the end of the course, you‘ll be able to...

  • Apply the principles of effective networking
  • Improve your impression-management skills in a professional context
  • Develop your analytical and prioritisation skills
  • Identify, select and use online tools to enhance your digital presence
  • Develop the potential of your personal brand

Who is the course for?

This course is intended for anyone looking to enhance and develop their professional network in order to open up opportunities and strengthen their professional relationships. The course does not require any previous experience of studying networking.

For further information about registration, the final assessment course, your eligibility and the BA in Business Management, visit the Open University website. The Open University does not operate in Cuba, Iran, North Korea, Sudan and Syria. This means that Learners based in those countries will not be able to convert their participation in this Program to Open University course credits.

Who will you learn with?

Lead educator on Business Fundamentals: Effective Networking. Before becoming an academic Terry's marketing career spanned fast-moving consumer goods, the arts, and the non-profit sector.

Who developed the course?

The Open University

As the UK’s largest university, The Open University (OU) supports thousands of students to achieve their goals and ambitions via supported distance learning, helping to fit learning around professional and personal life commitments.

  • Established

    1969
  • Location

    Milton Keynes, UK
  • World ranking

    Top 510Source: Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2020

Learning on FutureLearn

Your learning, your rules

  • Courses are split into weeks, activities, and steps to help you keep track of your learning
  • Learn through a mix of bite-sized videos, long- and short-form articles, audio, and practical activities
  • Stay motivated by using the Progress page to keep track of your step completion and assessment scores

Join a global classroom

  • Experience the power of social learning, and get inspired by an international network of learners
  • Share ideas with your peers and course educators on every step of the course
  • Join the conversation by reading, @ing, liking, bookmarking, and replying to comments from others

Map your progress

  • As you work through the course, use notifications and the Progress page to guide your learning
  • Whenever you’re ready, mark each step as complete, you’re in control
  • Complete 90% of course steps and all of the assessments to earn your certificate

Want to know more about learning on FutureLearn? Using FutureLearn

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