Hello My Name is Awkward; How to Network (Successfully)

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What is Networking?! “In its purest form, it’s about people enjoying other people, communicating passions and connecting with others who share those passions. ” (Vest, 2014)

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1: Start Networking Before You Need It Networking is not a one time thing Have a professional E-mail account Think about investing in generic business cards Make sure you have a positive social media presence Always!

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2: Ask Questions People love talking about themselves What do they do? Why they are at an event? Stay away from potentially awkward subjects Listen and stay focused on what they are saying

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3: Have Prepared “go-to” Topics Examples: New restaurants you visited Events on campus Current event (make sure it is not political) The weather.. It works! Know about the event or the person being honored Bring up their accomplishments

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4: Don’t be that person Avoid talking over people Keep a professional tone Give others time to shine

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5: Knowing What the Connection is They assisted you in some way at that time Thank you E-mail, Hand-written card You see them as someone who can assist you in the future Connect with them LinkedIn, Twitter, E-mail The “we’ll just be friends” Leave a good impression

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6: Never Dismiss Anyone as Unimportant You never know where your next connection will lead you You might be the connection they are looking for

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How to Handle Awkward Situations (But let’s hope they don’t happen)

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You Forgot their Name Try not to forget it! First, repeat their name back to them when they introduce themselves- might help you remember Use it in conversation, so you don’t forget Look for a name tag Bring them over to someone else to introduce Honestly, just ask them again! ?

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Leaving a conversation; Before it’s Over “You work in ___? So does ____, come with me to meet them! “ Introduce them to someone else “Anyway, I don’t want to monopolize your time” “It’s been great talking with you, let’s exchange cards”

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Any Questions?!