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Tips for Networking

September 18, 2019 4:31pm

You’ve probably heard the phrase “It’s not what you know, but who you know” when it comes to getting that perfect job. And the more professional experience you gain, the more you might have realized how true that statement can be. Though technology seems to have taken over the world, it remains crucial to get out from behind the computer and mingle with people face to face. You never know when you will meet that person who could help change the future of your career. Here are some tips on how to be successful at networking.

Engage on social media

Being behind a computer screen might sound like an odd place to network, but it can actually be a great place to start. Liking someone’s status that you are following, commenting on their posts, and sharing their material is a great way to get your name out there and to be more recognizable to people. And if you are a shy person, this can serve as a way to engage in casual conversation with someone before you meet them face to face in a professional setting.

Be a good listener

When you are introduced to someone at a networking event, let them do their fair share of the talking. Be a good listener. People want to feel like you are genuinely interested in them and what they have to say. Don’t try to turn the conversation to business right away. Let the conversation flow naturally. You never know what you can learn about someone or what you might have in common, so keep it casual. You’ll more than likely wind up talking about your careers anyway, especially if you are attending a professional event.

Research possible attendees beforehand

It’s not a bad idea to do a little digging before that next conference or social gathering. Find out who might be in attendance that you have been wanting to meet. If there is a speaker you’ve been wanting to connect with, do some research about them. Figure out what ice breakers you might be able to use or talking points you could bring up to create a better conversation and connection.

Bring a friend

If you are welcome to bring a guest at your next outing, do it! Not only will having a friend tag along ease the jitters of meeting strangers, you can each talk the other up without seeming overly confident.

Get involved in the community

The thought of putting in extra hours in the evenings or weekends might sound exhausting, but there is perhaps no better way to meet people in the community than actually getting involved in the community. Not only will volunteering be personally rewarding, it can help you professionally as well. It’s a great way to meet and get to know people in your community and make connections you would otherwise not have the opportunity to make. So the next time someone asks you to get involved, say yes!

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