As you may know, two of the Career Development Center’s major events coming up–Living and Working in Grand Rapids (4/1) and Chicago (4/15)–networking is something that you should feel comfortable with. Well you are in luck because we have some networking tips just for you!
First, it is important to know that networking is a continual life long process. When you are networking, always look for the next step in gaining information about your field. Also, networking is not only limited to professionals in your field. You never know when a position you are interested in may come available at a company you might not have expected! Networking is the best way to find a job or internship!
Here are a list of some do’s and don’ts for networking:
- Wear something with pockets, or carry a small bag so you have a place to stow business cards
- Jot notes in a small notebook
- Keep one hand free at all times to shake hands with people you meet
- Dress professional, sharp and modest
- Thank your network partners and keep in touch with them
- Develop lasting relationships, not just contacts
- Look for ways to help the people in your network
- Ask two important questions: “What is your story?” and “What advice would you have for me as I consider entering this field?”
- Brag or exaggerate the truth in your conversations
- Spend too much time in unfocused conversation; respect and appreciate their time
- Gossip or share inappropriately; stay professional and relevant
- Allow your networking relationship to become one-sided
- Ask personal questions or about money/salary
- Ask for a job
We hope that these tips will help to make you feel comfortable in moving forward with expanding your network. Make a connection between yourself and the other person and follow up with them. Be sure to be genuine and sincere in your interactions and always thank your contacts for their time!
Lastly, there is still time to sign up for Living and Working in Chicago! This event is always well-attended and fun for students! Email firstname.lastname@example.org to register!
If you would like to explore appropriate networking further or would like to possibly find some contacts who you may connect with in your field, call our office (616-395-7950) to make an Networking appointment with Joelle Fundaro! Be sure to keep in touch with your contacts!