Friend or Foe: The Pros and Cons of Professional Networking

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If you are a therapist in private practice, you know how solitary this profession can feel. Despite the fact that we are with people most of the day, we are required to keep our own “stuff,” under wraps, so that we can focus on our client’s “stuff.” Add to that the fact that everything that we hear during the day must be kept confidential, and we start to understand how CIA agents might feel.

One way to solve these feelings of isolation is to put ourselves out there and network with other healthcare practitioners. However, doing so can bring up a range of issues. So, let’s take a look at some of the pros and cons of professional networking.

Let’s start with the pros:

Increased Exposure

Networking with other professionals is a great way to let people in your community know who you are and what you do. Often times, referrals will come your way, once you establish positive relationships with fellow providers, who may not specialize in the same fields as you.

Access To Experts In Other Areas

Speaking of specialization, networking gives you access to other practitioners who can consult with you about cases that are outside of your comfort zone. Through these conversations, you can decide whether you can learn what’s needed, or whether a referral is appropriate.

Someone To Learn With

Let’s face it, CE classes can be boring sometimes. However, they can be far more enjoyable when taken with a colleague. Networking allows you the opportunity to meet people to attend classes with. It’s not so bad when you know you’re going for dinner afterwards!

Comradery

Possibly the most important benefit of networking is the human factor of meeting other people to talk to, about things that you can’t share with anyone else. Considering our profession, we must know that talking to others releases stress. Isn’t it ironic how we often neglect this need for ourselves?

And now the cons:

Potential To Meet People We Don’t Like

You’d think, as therapists, that we would be adept at dealing with people that we don’t like, but as it turns out: We Are Human Too! And this human condition can lead to some uncomfortable interactions with others, particularly when we are meeting people who haven’t been vetted.

Decreased Privacy

Many networking tools, particularly online ones, don’t protect your privacy the way that they should. In addition, putting your information in the wrong places can lead spammers to your virtual doorstep.

Potential For Awkward Situations

We don’t mean the socially awkward but conscious kind either. Picture this: you meet for coffee with your new networking buddy, only to find out that she is a huge proponent of the atrocity that is Gay Conversion Therapy, where you are an advocate for . To say that you two are not a good match for one another would be an understatement!

Want to experience the benefits of networking without the risk? Here at Therapy Hive, we pride ourselves on our ability to provide professionals with a network of like-minded folks with similar needs and goals. Contact us for more info!

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