Online networks: I really enjoy Facebook for keeping up with friends, family and cpd23. Professionally I have chosen Nebraska Learns as my network to learn and grow in a safe environment. If I were looking for a job I would probably join LinkedIn.
Real networks are my favorite! Through the Basic Skills Classes (before they were available online) and NLA training seminars I have met many talented and inspiring librarians. Volunteering is an excellent way to broaden your networks and I highly recommend it.
In my "previous life" networking was essential. When I was new to my profession and had an issue that common sense, policy or a manual couldn't help me solve, it was necessary to call the colleague I met at a meeting or heard about on the grapevine. The phrase was WWGD, What Would Gloria Do? since Gloria had seen it all and tackled every problem. Most importantly, when policy or bureaucracy was about to send me over the deep end I would "take a partner", call Gloria and vent! As this real network grew and evolved I got to be Gloria every now and then. After more than 30 years this network still is strong...I wonder if Facebook will last this long?