A few weeks ago I went to an interesting workshop for International Students where I learn a lot about NETWORKING. I know that many of us do not like networking…. Who likes to talk to a bunch of people they haven’t met in their life? No one. But the true is that NETWORKING is the way most people (in this case students) might find a job or at least can make a good connection. You never know, you can find a mentor or a friend, as well as good ideas and new perspectives about life and careers. The fact is that even though networking can be tough, it can be fun too.
I would like to share with you a few tips that I learn from Joselin Mane, a Social Media Strategist and Networking Guru. In his workshop Networking 2.0, I learned new things I never imagined would work to get to know new people.
First of all, we should start working with our Personal Brand. Create an original business card. Using a picture might be informal but it will make people remember you. Think about it, if you were at an event with 50 different business cards in your hand, you would really want to remember peoples’ faces. On the other hand, we should create a website (just a short bio is enough). Many of us have LinkedIn accounts, of course, but remember that recruiters will Google you, and the more information they find, the better. You can use free websites such as www.about.me or another websites builder such as www.wix.com
Other useful things:
- When meeting people, use something that won’t make them forget you. Example: flower in hair, special pin, etc. Use something colorful. Have you been to a career fair? Everyone is dressed in black and white! Its time to differentiate ourselves.
- Take pictures or selfies. Take this advice with precaution. Do it when you feel is right because the idea is making a good impression.
- Send those pictures in the follow up e-mail. Send a follow up email immediately. Don’t let them forget you.
- Practice your elevator speech as much as you can. Try to be natural and fluent.
- If you need to use a name tag, use it in your left side. They will see it better.
- If you engaged in a conversation remember people’s name. Everyone loves to be called by their names.
- Connect with people before the event when possible. Use social media.
- Reactivate your Twitter account (if it is a professional one), and put it on you name tag.
- Google yourself. Let’s see what the internet says about you.
- Join professional groups.
The idea of Networking is meeting new people to create a relationship that might benefit both of them. We just need to be ourselves acting naturally. We are not born to be liked by everyone, so don’t panic if someone ignores you.
If you want to know more about Networking, please visit Joselin Mane website http://bostontweetup.com/
Maria Martin is pursuing a Master in Project Management at Northeastern University. She is passionate about helping others in their personal and professional life. She is currently doing a full time paid co-op at Eversource in the Marketing and Sales Department. You can contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org