Sabio Systems Career Advisor – March 2, 2016
If you want to improve your networking efforts, it is important to learn how to “work a room or event.” Each time you find yourself in a group setting, there are endless networking opportunities. I’d like to address some common questions.
HOW DO I APPROACH PEOPLE?
It is best to approach people who are standing alone or in a smaller group. Smile and ask if you can join them and comment on something you have in common.
HOW DO I BECOME MEMORABLE?
It’s important to be lighthearted, fun and share interesting stories. You should be energetic, a great listener and engaging.
HOW CAN I BE MORE SELF-CONFIDENT?
Your self-confidence will increase if you feel you have prepared. Read the paper, magazines, trade publications and have three to five stories, news comments or questions you will ask prepared in advance. The more you practice having casual conversations, the more confident you will become.
HOW CAN I OVERCOME MY SHYNESS?
It is comforting to know that over 90% of people describe themselves as shy, especially in a networking situation. Observe the behavior and conversations of outgoing people you admire. Consider joining a book club or toastmasters to overcome your shyness.
HOW DO I MOVE FROM SMALL TALK?
Small talk is how you begin to develop rapport and is most important in networking. Let the other person talk about themselves and they will like you more and be more apt to add you to their network when the conversation turns to more serious topics.
WHAT IS THE BEST WAY TO GET A BUSINESS CARD?
Offer your business card and then ask “Do you have a card?” If you are a full time job seeker your card should list your contact information on the front and list facts on the back about your experience and accomplishments.
Networking is not different than any skills. You will learn how to work a room and become a great networker with practice, keep working on it!
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