Mentor Spotlight: How to build your network with confidence

Networking is a key part to landing any job these days but having the confidence to reach out to people can be daunting. What if you had a few tricks up your sleeve to make your task a little easier?

Apprentice Nation Mentor, Mike Malak, has been sharing some exclusive insights to help you get on the radar of music industry professionals.

Networking is definitely one of the keys to success in this business, but how do you get started? Keep reading for some of his top tips on reaching out to people in the industry, making new contacts and ultimately, getting a job.

Mike is a Senior Agent at Paradigm, looking after the performing careers of Billie Eilish, Jess Glynne, Girl In Red and Denzel Curry, amongst others. He also launched his own record label this year, Coldpress.

Whether you’ve got dreams to set up your own music festival one day or whether you want to be the next head of Atlantic Records, check out Mike’s tips and advice for getting a few steps ahead of the game.

Mike’s top tips for making industry connections:

  • Instead of asking for help, offer your skills. I started out building websites for artist teams, not necessarily because it was what I wanted to do but because I knew it would help them out and in that way, I could start working with them and get to know them.
  • Start at small shows. Find people you want to work with and reach out to them with your offer. Be prepared to do anything and everything to help them out. If you start small, you can grow together.
  • Get an awareness of who works with who. Do some research online and see which people or artists are working together. That means that when you start talking to people, you know what, and who, you’re talking about!
  • Know your industry. Find out about the different roles on offer. I didn’t necessarily know I wanted to be an agent straight away, I just knew I wanted to work with artists.
  • Connect with people on Instagram. That’s where everyone is hanging out. Don’t do it on LinkedIn for the music industry.
  • Consider what is unique about you or what you can offer. Having that covered when you put yourself forward will really make you stand out.

Thanks Mike! We reckon doing your research and putting a bit of thought into your approach and offer is what will give you the confidence to start making connections.

Get your own mentor experience with Apprentice Nation. Check out all our mentors here.

Next time, we’ll be hearing from Kema Davies, UK Early Careers Recruiter at Microsoft, with her tips on how to push yourself out of your comfort zone and grow in your career.

For more tips on networking online, check out what RAYE told us in her Apprentice Nation interview.