Creating a Network in Business Development and Job Searching

At first glance, you might not see the connection between these three functions, but there are some common threads which run through them, and each can support and enhance the other. The link between networking and job searches should be fairly apparent, since one of the best ways to learn about new opportunities will generally come from colleagues in the same industry, or from contacts you’ve made while in your present job. But how does business development tie in with these two other functions?


Networking lets you take advantage of personal contacts as well as business contacts, and without them you’d have to rely mostly on your resume during a job search, and on your own business acumen if you’re trying to develop your business. Having some additional experience in your corner can be just like having more employees, except better because your contacts may have some really valuable business advice for you.

There are times when you just want to lean on someone who has been around longer, and has gone through the ebb and flow of business for years. These are times when networking and business development can go hand-in-hand. In fact, you may even want to enter into a strategic partnership with someone whom you’ve known in the business world for years.

Business Development 

In general terms, business development includes almost any kind of activities which will help improve your business. What that really boils down to though, is increasing revenues and profitability, making strategic business decisions, and making the business grow, i.e. expand. Business networking is a process which puts you in touch with suppliers, business owners, and other professionals, all of whom might help you grow your business.

This kind of networking gives you access to competitors, clients, and fellow businessmen. You probably have something you can offer to them, and they in turn can supply you with something you need but may not have within your organization. Having relationships like these might well provide you with opportunities for partnerships, joint undertakings, or new possibilities for expanding your business.

Job Searching 

As mentioned above, the connection between job searching and networking is a fairly strong one, since many of the best opportunities are actually referred to you by people you know in the same business. Is there any commonality between job searches and improving your business development skills? Of course. The people you might rely on to help you with your job search might be the very same business personnel who can help you improve your business development skills.

If some of your colleagues have been around a while and have enjoyed relatively long business careers, they might know of positions you’re well suited for, and they might also be able to mentor you on how to get better at growing a business. They might be able to put you in touch with key people in your industry who can serve as suppliers, useful owners, or helpful colleagues.

Getting ahead in business calls for you to make good use of all three of these functions, and given the connection between them all, becoming proficient at one should help you become good at the others as well.

How a Search Firm Launched a Global Networking Group

Erudites Networking Group is a global community of like-minded business professionals interested in exchanging knowledge and ideas, encouraging, and facilitating referrals, and giving back to the community. Erudites began as an organic expansion of the innovative approaches founder Liz Capants was already using with her EBC Associates search consultancy firm, which she started in 2007.

Built on a reputation

With a philosophy of building long-term partnerships with companies and candidates, EBC was already coaching candidates on resume building and strategic interviewing as well as providing innovative ways to bring candidates and companies together. In a business that tends to be transactional, EBC is unusual in that its mission is to connect, refer, and provide other resources for candidates and companies. Adding networking opportunities to support businesses and executives in transition was a natural next move.

Erudites Networking Group was formally launched in 2018, and was holding twice-monthly meetings and curating corporate sponsored events to generate business growth in the New York City area, prior to the pandemic. As the resulting economic slowdown either displaced people from their jobs or prompted them to re-assess their careers, the group’s networking activities transitioned from in-person to online. The silver lining? Moving meetings to Zoom has allowed Erudites to expand globally, creating a broader and richer network of professionals who help spread the word about each other. Members of the Erudites Networking Group act as force-multipliers for each other, whether they are seeking to grow a business or seeking a new career opportunity.

In every adversity

The pandemic really ignited some of the things Erudites (and EBC Associates) had been doing. Erudites Founder, Liz Capants notes, “So many executives had to pivot and do something else that the focus turned to transferable skills. For many, there was a real challenge in moving from a corporate mindset – where your identify is tied to a position and a company — to a more entrepreneurial mindset in terms of selling and branding yourself, creating your story, and using social media channels to attract companies to you by sharing your expertise as a thought leader.” The most important thing is to take action in discovering what that change might look like and building a referral networking process, according to Capants. “Having the proper resources behind you and developing a referral network of people who know you and your capabilities and can refer and recommend you is key, and helps reinforce your brand.”

In networking, quality is more important than quantity. Capants notes that sometimes a deeper dive in a more select group with a collaborative approach gets better results and generates better referrals. “When you create a network of people who are endorsing and selling your services, this is so much more powerful than saying it yourself. That’s the basis of branding and referral networking, which is what Erudites offers. This group evolved organically, through working with business owners and executives to help them network and connect, especially if they didn’t have the time available to network. In this group, members are actively working to market each other. The key is to always be able to network and have contacts you can tap. Who you know will be the key to getting that next job or landing the next client.”

Interested in learning more about membership in the Erudites Networking Group? We’d love to hear from you!