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networking on zoom

6 Tips for multicultural networking on Zoom in 2022 

How we define socializing “at work” and networking has changed drastically in the past two years since the COVID-19 pandemic began. Now, we’re all plugged into the digital realm. Most connections are made from our home offices over video rather than face-to-face. 

Since 2020, Zoom has become one of the fastest-growing apps of the pandemic. It is now the number one platform for businesses and professionals to connect and network, with meeting participants increasing by 2900 percent

While we may be used to it by now, many still find it challenging to successfully network on Zoom and other video conferencing platforms. Those who spent much of their professional career networking in person find that networking on Zoom is less personal, and connections feel superficial. It can also be more difficult to establish these connections in meetings and other virtual events when pressed by time. 

Networking on Zoom can add some barriers

Multicultural networking on Zoom is an additional challenge, adding in cultural differences, language barriers, and other factors complicated by virtual communication. Miscommunication and awkwardness are likely to occur online if individuals are not prepared. Some participants may feel left out or unwelcome in multicultural settings if they are in the minority or others do not include them in conversations. 

However, preparing for virtual multicultural networking on Zoom is not difficult. Below are some tips that will help you breeze through your next virtual meet-up and make those crucial connections!  

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6 Tips for multicultural networking on Zoom 

Variety is the spice of life, which extends to our networks and professional circles as well! We need diversity in our networks, and a good network will naturally be diverse so learning how to navigate multicultural spaces is essential. Navigating these spaces online creates an additional challenge, but fear not—with these tips, you’ll be connecting virtually like a pro in no time. 

  1. Moving past miscommunication – Miscommunication happens. Especially online, it’s practically a given that something will get lost or misinterpreted at some point. Add in cultural differences, language barriers, and varied communication styles, and it’s a recipe for disaster. Or not. As long as you go in knowing that miscommunication is likely to happen, you can better navigate the situation if / when it occurs. Instead of assuming the worst, focus on thinking positively and presenting yourself as open and understanding. Others will feel more comfortable around you if they know you are willing to take the time and effort to understand them and work through communication issues. 
  2. Keep an open mind and avoid stereotypes – Stereotypes are ingrained in our society. Often, we don’t even realize we judge others based on these preconceived notions. However, we each need to work to dismantle these ideas. When entering a multicultural setting, keep an open mind. Get to know people as individuals rather than make assumptions about what they might be like based on stereotypes. 
  3. Start small – If you feel overwhelmed by the idea of networking with large groups over Zoom, try participating in smaller virtual events first. Especially with a multicultural group, it may be better to engage with fewer people to get to know each other and minimize the potential for miscommunication and other obstacles that arise in larger groups.
  4. Prep before the meet-up – If you’re nervous about going in blind to a meet-up, see a guest list available. If so, you can use this list to familiarize yourself with the others who will be in attendance. You take a few minutes to read their LinkedIn profiles or visit their businesses’ sites and use that info to better connect with them once you meet virtually. Depending on the nature of the meeting, this additional background information could help you curate questions or spark relevant conversation topics. 
  5. Take the initiative – Be an active participant. Whether you’re a total introvert or extremely outgoing, people will be drawn to you if they see you actively participating and attempting to engage with others. You don’t have to be the loudest in the (virtual) room, but your engagement will be appreciated. The more you participate, the more familiar you will become with others. You’ll definitely be remembered. In multicultural settings, the conversation may flow to cultural topics and personal cultural experiences. Being an active and engaged participant in these conversations will show your commitment to cultural inclusivity. Your connections will be more substantial from your active participation. 
  6. Follow-up beyond the first meeting – After connecting on Zoom, follow up! Since many feel rushed or disconnected in virtual meetings, adding cross-platform communication can help to solidify the tentative connections you’ve made. Follow them on social media, send them a personalized LinkedIn note or email, comment and share their content and continue to build that relationship beyond Zoom!lift-to-the-top

Now that you have some ideas on how to go about multicultural networking on Zoom, get more ideas on how to network during LIVE events with Latino bicultural audiences. Sign up for our newsletter and download our FREE e-booklet, “10 Steps to Happy Networking with Latino Bicultural Audiences”! 

 

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How to leverage your bicultural Latina skills on your resume

According to studies on the topic, biculturals, or people who identify with two or more cultures, are said to play an essential role in economic development by starting new ventures. 

Bicultural Latina professionals can deliver a competitive edge with their language skills and cultural knowledge and are valuable members of any team, board, or company. Additionally, bicultural Latina entrepreneurs bring unique perspectives to their ventures and networks. 

How to find a job in “hot” industries, leverage Hispanic language and culture skills, deal with stereotypes, handle job interviews, and play the corporate game.

As you spruce up your resume for the new year, make sure to highlight your bicultural Latina skills. These skills go beyond just language; cultural knowledge is also an important asset. 

In her book, Best Careers For Bilingual Latinos, Hispanic career development specialist Graciela Kenig says, “When you work in a company that wants to serve a multicultural market, a different perspective is one of the most important strengths you can bring.”

Below are a few tips for improving your resume to spotlight those bicultural skills and catch the eye of recruiters. 

4 Key areas to highlight your bicultural Latina skills on your resume 

Of course, adding your bicultural skills to the skills section of your resume is the obvious choice. Still, there are other ways you can highlight your cultural knowledge and language skills throughout your entire resume. 

  1. Resume Profile – Your resume profile is the first impression recruiters get. In this summary, you are hoping to catch their eye at a glance, so you should use this section to leverage your bicultural skills to stand out among other applicants. You can mention your bilingual abilities in your introduction and briefly touch on your cultural knowledge. 
  2. Education Section – If you studied abroad, learned a language in school, or participated in other cultural projects, courses, or clubs, you can use your Education section to highlight your bicultural skills further. Include any pertinent information that speaks to your bicultural identity and assets you can offer to your future employer. 
  3. Work Experience Section – Like the previous section, past work experience that utilized your bicultural Latina skills will help you get ahead of the competition. Use this section to spotlight specific projects, past positions, or work experiences where your bicultural identity shined. 
  4. Skills / Language Section – Finally, the Additional Skills and Language sections of your resume are the areas where most will expect to find your bicultural skills. Including them here is vital for recruiters who may only glance at your resume. Quickly spotting your bicultural skills will help when you may be one of many applicants, and standing out fast is necessary.

In this section, include your language proficiency, and you may even wish to have your country of heritage to drive that cultural edge further. Your language section may look like this: Spanish —native (Argentina); English — US (fluent). By including your country of heritage, you also highlight your cultural background, which companies may be interested in when approaching multicultural markets.

Photo by Los Muertos Crew from Pexels

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Depending on the job description, you might also like to add your citizenship status and years living in the US or your country of origin -if you are a first-generation immigrant. Otherwise, make sure you specify if you are second or third generation and have lived in any other country around the world for more than three months. Experiences of living abroad are well-considered, mainly when you apply for global companies, and it makes sure you position yourself for international promotion opportunities.

SIA Scotch Whiskey, The Entrepreneurial Spirit Fund,

SIA Scotch Whisky partners with Hello Alice to launch groundbreaking new entrepreneurship fund

Did you know that in the United States, multicultural entrepreneurs have reportedly received only a 2% share of venture capital annually over the last decade? SIA Scotch Whisky, an award-winning spirits brand founded by a first generation Hispanic entrepreneur, is looking to help bridge this gap by partnering with Hello Alice and celebrated activist, actor and producer Wilmer Valderrama to launch The Entrepreneurial Spirit Fund by SIA Scotch. Spearheaded by SIA’s founder Carin Luna-Ostaseski and inspired by her journey of building the brand from the ground up, this initiative aims to challenge conventions and inspire others to achieve the unexpected.

SIA Scotch Whiskey, The Entrepreneurial Spirit Fund,

Carin Luna-Ostaseski and group (PRNewsfoto/SIA Scotch Whisky)

This new grant program will deploy a quarter of a million dollars to multicultural small business owners in need of support, especially after the additional challenges they face because of COVID-19. It will also offer recipients access to mentorship opportunities with SIA’s founder, who is one of the first Hispanic people in history to create a Scotch Whisky, and who faced many challenges during her own entrepreneurship journey. 

SIA Scotch Whiskey, The Entrepreneurial Spirit Fund,

Carin Luna-Ostaseski, Founder of SIA Scotch Whisky (PRNewsfoto/SIA Scotch Whisky)

“SIA Scotch Whisky was born out of passion, determination and perseverance – the same characteristics that drive many other entrepreneurs. As a first generation Cuban American, I experienced so many uphill battles, from securing funding to dealing with regulations and securing investors,” said Carin Luna-Ostaseski. “But, after finally getting crowdfunded on Kickstarter and seeing those first bottles on shelves, I knew my purpose was to help inspire other underrepresented entrepreneurs achieve their dreams too. I am so proud of The Entrepreneurial Spirit Fund and its mission to embrace the cultural diversity that helps define our country.”

The Entrepreneurial Spirit Fund by SIA Scotch launches in partnership with Hello Alice, a free online platform that guides business owners through the growth of their company and matches individuals with the resources to make their dreams a reality.

“Now, more than ever, it’s important to recognize the impact that multicultural small businesses have on their communities,” said Elizabeth Gore, President & Cofounder, Hello Alice. “In the last 10 years, multicultural entrepreneurs have represented over 50% of new businesses started and created 4.7 million new jobs, yet they are largely excluded in funding. We are thrilled to be continuing our support for this community in partnership with SIA Scotch Whisky.”

You might be interested: Say ‘Hello Alice’ to the platform that is opening doors for small businesses and new entrepreneurs

SIA Scotch Whiskey, The Entrepreneurial Spirit Fund,

Wilmer Valderrama joins SIA Scotch Whisky (PRNewsfoto/SIA Scotch Whisky)

Additionally, activist, actor and producer Wilmer Valderrama joins The Entrepreneurial Spirit Fund as partner, continuing his ongoing tireless mission to push for diversity and inclusion. “Supporting the progress and perseverance of multicultural entrepreneurs who are trying to achieve their dreams and disrupt the status quo is incredibly important to me. I’m so honored to partner with SIA Scotch Whisky on The Entrepreneurial Spirit Fund and I believe that their work will make a big impact, especially during these difficult times,” said Wilmer Valderrama

The Entrepreneurial Spirit Fund by SIA Scotch will award $10,000 grants to 25 qualifying entrepreneurs who self-identify as people of color, for a total of $250,000. To apply, visit siascotchfund.helloalice.com. To be eligible, the business owner must be a citizen or legal permanent resident of the United States, 25 years or older, and must operate in at least one of the following states where SIA is sold: California, Florida, Illinois, Nevada, New York and/or Texas. For complete eligibility criteria and important restrictions, visit the application site. Applications are open now through August 10, 2021, grant recipients will be announced by September 14, 2021 and funding will be distributed by October 8, 2021.