About This Issue . . .
is here! Time for warmer weather . . . and maybe a fresh start in terms
of your career! In this issue of The Animal Science Monitor, we’re
going to explore a phenomenon that’s been building for quite some time
and is now firmly entrenched in both people’s personal and professional
lives. That phenomenon is that of social networking, specifically what
it is, why should you do it, and how should you do it. If you’re
shunning social networking, you might be missing out on opportunities
you don’t even know exist. We hope that you enjoy this issue of The ASM
and that it contains nuggets of wisdom that you can apply to your
career and team-building efforts.
– Dan and Don
Social Networking – What It Is
(By Beth Hilson)
we delve too deeply into the world of social networking, it would be
short sighted of us to assume that everybody knows what social
networking is. As a result, we came to the conclusion that a short
primer is probably in order.
just about everybody is familiar with is traditional networking – in
other words, making connections and building relationships through
face-to-face meetings or even over the telephone. This was the primary
way that networking was done for decades, even centuries, if you think
about it. Challenging those traditional means is social networking,
whose name would seem to denote that it’s similar to traditional
methods. However, that’s far from the case.
information presented in this article is by no means comprehensive.
It’s only meant to serve as a starting point. The second and third
articles in this issue of The Animal Science Monitor will build upon it
and provide more direction regarding the best way to approach social
networking, both personally and professionally.
put, social networking is an online form of networking (using, of
course, the Internet or World Wide Web) characterized by a
representation of the person engaging in said networking. This
representation in almost all cases takes the form of a profile, which
is located on a person’s profile page. Depending upon the social
networking site being used, the profile page can also include any
number of additional features. Some of the basic ones are listed below:
- A description of the person and/or basic information about them and their interests
- Instant messaging capabilities
- Email capabilities
- Relevant links
in mind that social networking platforms can vary from site to site.
Some sites have more features than others, and personal preference
plays a large role in which ones people use on an ongoing basis.
main purpose of social networking sites is the exchange of information
and ideas. What kind of information? Any and all kinds – if you can
think of it, it’s being exchanged on the Internet via social
networking. Another attractive feature of these sites and one of the
reasons that they’re so popular is that they appear to make
communication easier. Whether that’s actually true or not is a moot
point; it’s the perception, and in cyberspace (just like everywhere
else) perception is reality.
social networking came on the scene, there are four main social
networking sites that have gained runaway popularity at one time or
another. Those four include MySpace, Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
MySpace was the first to hit it big, but has shown signs of decline in
recent years. The Animal Science Monitor is part of the other three,
which enjoy increasing popularity and continue to add more users.
of that, we encourage you to join us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter,
and connect with us on LinkedIn. The following articles will explain
why and how you should do it . . . but why waste time? Make The ASM
part of your social networking efforts. You never know where it might
Social Networking – Why to Do It
(By Dan Simmons and Don Hunter)
Beth Hilson outlined in the above article, social networking is all
about the exchange of information and the ability to communicate more
readily and on a more consistent basis with friends, relatives, peers,
etc. So now that we’ve discussed what social media and networking is,
the question becomes this one: why should you do it?
There’s more than one answer to this question. We’ve listed the short ones below, and then we’ll elaborate further.
- To create and maintain your “personal brand,” so that you become recognized as an expert in your field
- To add to your network of contacts, so that you know who to turn to when you need important information
- To connect
with people from your past and stay in touch for the purpose of
building your cache of personal and professional references
Be viewed as an expert!
don’t have to tell you that the economy isn’t the greatest at the
moment. Unemployment is high, hiring is slow, and growth is tepid, to
say the least. This is exactly why it’s important for you to become
viewed as an expert in your field, and not just because you might be
contemplating a job move or a career change, but simply to stay
relevant in your current situation.
if you intend to stay at your current employer for the foreseeable
future, the key to growing your career, becoming more valuable, and
yes, even increasing your compensation, is to be considered an expert.
You want to be the person that others turn to when they need to solve a
problem or are seeking advice. When you become that person, your stock
rises . . . and in most cases, so do your earnings and your stature
within the company. Social
networking is a great way in which to increase your knowledge base for
this purpose. By making and maintaining connections with others, you’re
better able to exchange information with them and continue building
your skills. In addition, you also increase your visibility, engaging
in a bit of self-promotion that can pay dividends when people begin to
view you as an expert.
if you are looking for a job change, social networking can help there,
as well, and for many of the same reasons. After all, people want to
hire experts! When it comes to networking – both traditional and social
– you never know what contact will lead to your next great position.
The key is to increase your visibility and brand yourself in the most
effective fashion possible. Not only that, but as we listed above,
connecting with people from your past can provide you with excellent
references, and that might also make a difference in your job search.
this day and age of electronic media and the proliferation of the
Internet, not being part of the social media frenzy could be costing
you more than you realize. At the very least, you could be missing out
on opportunities – both for advancement at your current company or the
chance to land a great job and grow your career in new and exciting
Social Networking – How to Do It
(By Beth Hilson)
the first two parts of this special series for The ASM, we discussed
what social networking is and why you should do it. In this final part,
I’m going to tackle the “how” of social networking. First, though, let
me offer a disclaimer, because it would be impossible to include
everything about how to engage in social networking in just one
article, no matter how long that article is. My goal is to give an
overview of how somebody should approach social networking and
hopefully provide enough information to make them feel comfortable
most important question you should ask yourself regarding social
networking – regardless of whether you’ve already started or you
haven’t begun yet – is “What do I want to do?” In other words, what’s
your goal? What are you trying to accomplish? You should always keep
this in mind as you travel down the social networking path, because
it’s easy to become distracted and lose sight of it. And if that
happens, you won’t achieve the desired results.
The importance of participation
take a “for instance” example. That “for instance” would be that you
want to use social networking for the purpose of advancing your career.
More than likely, that’s the case for the majority of readers. In such
a situation, you’d want to select the social networking platforms that
you believe would help you to achieve that goal. One such site is
LinkedIn, which touts itself as the “professional” social networking
site. Some of the other popular sites, such as Twitter and Facebook,
are more personal in nature, although they can still be used for
That being said, the steps involved in getting started in social networking are pretty simple:
- Through research, determine which social networking sites are right for you.
- Sign up for the service, which will require a username and password.
- Create a profile.
- Populate that profile with relevant information.
- Learn as much as you can about the site (there are usually tutorials available).
- Participate often.
It’s that last step that often proves
cumbersome for people. They have no problem signing up, creating a
profile, and filling it with information. Then they walk away and let
it sit there. If you’re not going to actively participate in a social
networking site, there’s essentially no reason to create the profile in
the first place. Ongoing participation is a huge factor in determining
whether or not your efforts will ultimately pay dividends.
An important distinction
might not think so, but there is a difference between social media and
social networking. Specifically social networking is type of social
media. Blogging, for instance, is a form of social media, but not
necessarily a form of social networking. While it’s true that
information is exchanged and communication is initiated, it represents
a decidedly different dynamic than social networking. The same holds
true for a site like YouTube, which deals with videos, or Flickr, which
promotes photo sharing.
here’s the great part: you can incorporate the tools of social media
sites like YouTube or Flickr into your social networking endeavors.
This will serve to enhance your efforts and increase the chances that
you’ll be successful in achieving your goals – whatever those goals
last important thing to remember is that you shouldn’t be intimidated
by social networking (or social media, for that matter). While it’s
true that there’s a learning curve and that there’s only so many hours
in a day, if you’re selective about which sites you use and strategic
about how you use them, you might find the experience a fun and
Upcoming Events in the Animal Science Industry
The Animal Science Monitor, we know it’s not all about social
networking . . . it’s about traditional networking, as well! As a
result, we’re advocates of continuous education and the promotion of
industry events such as conferences and conventions. The training and
networking opportunities that exist at these events are extremely
valuable and can pay dividends in a number of different ways. The ASM
is pleased to highlight these upcoming industry events:
Ruminant Nutrition Conference – Among the topics to be addressed at
this conference include “Metabolic Considerations for Immunity in
Nutrition Cows,” “Effect of Over-Supplementation of Trace Minerals on
the Environment,” and “The Nutritionist’s Checklist for Animal Health,”
among many others. The location of this year’s event is the Hilton
Arlington Hotel in Arlington, Tex., and the dates are Monday, April 12,
and Tuesday, April 13. Click here for more information.
Nutrition Conference – This annual event is designed for feed industry
personnel, nutrition consultants, extension specialists, veterinarians,
and producers. The conference focuses on a wide range of animal health
and animal nutrition topics relating to the dairy industry. There are
also presentations honoring graduate students’ research efforts. The
location of this year’s event is the Grand Wayne Center in Fort Wayne,
Ind., and the dates are Tuesday, April 20, and Wednesday, April 21. Click here for more information.
If there’s an industry event that you believe we should promote through our newsletter, please email your information to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Coming Up in the Next Issue . . .
wondered exactly what a recruiter does . . . or what a recruiter can do
for you? Well, we’ll answer that question in the upcoming issue of The
Animal Science Monitor. Not only that, but we’ll have the next
installment in our “Connecting You” series, which was bumped due to our
special issue regarding social networking. If you’re looking to advance
your career or build your team with top-notch talent, this is an issue
you won’t want to miss! The next issue of The ASM is scheduled for publication during the week of April 5.