I’ve done fairly well for myself career-wise, all things considered. But I was in a management meeting yesterday where HR gave a presentation about the importance of networking and I think I made a bit of a spectacle of myself.
I am keenly aware of the importance of networking in terms of career progression, especially beyond a certain point. I am also extremely bad at it, and I acknowledge that as well. So far, so good.
But then they start talking about people who avoid happy hours and other work functions and how they become a “running joke” at the office and I think that triggered me I said some people don’t do those things, not because they dislike their co-workers or because they think they have better things to do with their time, but because they are intensely uncomfortable in unstructured social situations and it’s not fair to turn that into a joke.
Some of my colleagues started chiming in with networking suggestions and, for the most part, I’m sure they were trying to be legitimately helpful. But I struggle with this only because I feel like if you don’t have social anxiety it’s impossible to understand just how difficult this can be for some people.
Anyway… it’s been a long week. Thanks for letting me vent.