PROJECT 17: Network Partner Database Creation


Throughout your working career you will want continuously to be developing a quality list of potential network partners. This process never stops. Networking is the most effective, if not always quick and efficient, job search strategy that you will probably ever use.

If you are in the job market now, have already accepted employment, are currently just working, anticipate a future entrepreneurial experience, planning graduate study, etc., this network creation project will be very valuable to you in both the short and long term. You will learn how to create, maintain, and use network partners who really want to help you; not turn you down as in a job interview.

The purpose of this project is to get you started on learning how to identify potential partners and then how to create a process that allows you to get better known by this unique group of partners. They need to be reminded of your goals and plans on a regular basis and you need to keep them advised regularly of your career concerns. This is far preferable to contacting them just when you are in job trouble.

The networking search strategies chapter of your textbook serves as the informational content base of this project. The objective is to get you to explore several resources, including your own personal list of contacts such as IU alumni, professional association members/leaders, faculty, work colleagues, and many other resources on networking that you might discover through your web research.

Identify at least three important sources of potential network partners that might help you in your future long-term career information. You can identify any target markets and Chapter 16 will help in that process. But you must also use the alumni databases from Indiana University that you can link to from the UCSO website. Look for the Kelley School of Business Alumni Association and the IU Alumni Association.

The availability and process instructions tend to change over time so we want you to browse and learn the current process in this website. Especially review how to network with club leaders in cities of interest to you.


Review Chapters 14, 15 and 16 in the textbook.

Your finished project should fulfill ALL of the requirements below.


A.     Review Chapters 14, 15, and especially 16 in the textbook. Each chapter discusses various aspects of networking, but Chapter 16 specifically gets into the development of your contact database which is the main goal of this project.

B.     Sources: Given your goals, identify at least three sources that you plan to use in creating your list. Why is each of them especially relevant to you? One of your resources must be the IU Alumni Association database. Going through the UCSO homepage, you may link to the two databases: IU Alumni Association and the IU Kelley School of Business database. After reviewing the benefits of each to your circumstances and needs, select one of these two databases to use in this project. You are welcomed to use other resources if more appropriate for your needs.

o       CONTACT: Include name, title or occupation, address and telephone number. Categorize your list by teachers, work associates, friends, relatives, acquaintances, and friends of friends. We recommend that you use Access, Outlook, or Excel.

o       ACTION: Indicate what action you intend to carry out (i.e. giving them your resume, requesting advice, job interviewing, and info searching, etc.).

o       ACTION DATE: List the date that you expect to carry out the action.

Your table might look like the Network Contact List in the syllabus appendix spaces for at least 15 contacts or some variation of the contact card shown in Figure 16.1 of the textbook.

C.    Contact Analysis: Chapter 16 recommends many resources for sourcing contacts including your own personal knowledge base. Identify two sources and explain briefly why you chose them. Then describe how you plan to use these two resources in the future and how you plan to maintain a relationship that will help you keep an up-to-date list of very important network partners in your personal information management tool. This “Database Analysis” should help you in the future.

D.    Record Data: For each of the three sources identify five contacts with whom you would initiate an informational interview within the next year. Using the chart above (Figure 16.1 in the textbook), record all of the contact information for these individuals. Altogether you will be turning in a list of 15 contacts for this project to your Career Counselor.

E.     Information Request Letter: Draft a networking email that requests an appointment with any one of the above potential networking partners. Follow the sample cover letter formats discussed in Figures 13.6 and 13.7 in your textbook. If this is an informational interview, be sure to state why you are requesting an appointment and what you expect the outcome to be. Emphasize that this is NOT a job interview appointment request.

F.     Supporting Materials: Figures 16.7 and 16.8 in your textbook will assist you in creating the content that should go into this informational interview request. The two “Career Action Projects” descriptions at the end of Chapter 16 will provide more specifics about what this part of the project usually includes.

You should indicate in the email that your resume and other informational documents are attached; but, you do not need to actually include these in this project. This project complements the Informational Interview project, so you might want to do both of these projects, depending on your needs.

Deliverables: Turn in to your Career Counselor:

Ø      Database analysis

Ø      15 contact names with information

Ø      Sample email request

Ø      List of attachments

Ø      Analysis of approach to your situation now and later.