Back to the Basics: 7 Tips for Networking in Person


by Ashley Lauren Perez

With technology making it easy to communicate through email, texting, and social media, it can sometimes make professionals too comfortable. Technology helps make it easy and convenient to communicate with many people quickly and hassle free. However, professionals need to remember that it’s important to take time to get back to the basics and still network in person. Whether you are unemployed and looking for a job or employed and looking just to network for business referrals, it would be in your best interest to meet with others in person for additional networking opportunities. Adding this personal touch to your networking efforts can go a long way to building relationships.

If you’re new to networking or haven’t done it in a while, it’s important to remember the following key tips:

  • Be prepared: it’s always important to be prepared before you attend a networking event or situation. Make sure you have your business cards, be able to explain who you are/what you do in 30 seconds, research the event and individuals attending, and be sure to have good questions to ask those you come in contact with.
  • Dress appropriately: research the details of the event to ensure you are dressed appropriately but it’s always best to try and keep it somewhat professional and tame, regardless of the setting.
  • Don’t overdo it: food and drinks may be available at networking events. Be sure to not overdo it with alcoholic beverages and try to stay away from foods that might be extremely messy. Keep mints (rather than gum) available.
  • Don’t be shy: whether you are an introvert or not, it is important to not be shy at these events. Everyone is here for the same reason- to talk to new people. Put yourself out there. Even if you are naturally shy, you may feel more comfortable as you talk to more and more people.
  • Practice active listening: although it’s common for people to talk about themselves when they are nervous or unsure of what to say, your conversations with people should be 20% talking and 80% listening. You can keep the conversation flowing by asking the questions you prepared prior to the event. Be sure to also respond in ways that can show you can relate, which can potentially build a connection.
  • Work the room: it’s important to try and talk to as many people as you can, so be sure to not get stuck talking to one person or one group of people for too long. Spend about 10 to 15 minutes talking to one person/group and politely excuse yourself to move on to the next person/group.
  • Follow up: ask for business cards so you are able to follow up with the individuals that you talked to. This can help build your acquaintances into useful business relationships.

Networking is an amazing way to connect with people that can help you find a job, help you gain business referrals, or just a great way to discover new learning resources. The possibilities are endless if you are utilizing multiple networking platforms, whether it be social media or “in real life” meetings.  Most importantly, be prepared and open and you’ll be sure to make the most of your networking efforts.

About the Author

Ashley Lauren Perez

Ashley Lauren Perez is a talent acquisition specialist and a lover of all things HR related. Additionally, she is using her human resources and creative writing background to write a blog for managers, leaders, employees, and job seekers. This blog’s mission is meant to make a positive difference by being informative as well as inspiring.

When Ashley isn’t writing, you can find her: reading; partaking in outdoor activities; and embarking on adventures and travel.

Feel free to read more blogs written by Ashley at: http://ashleylaurenperez.com

Or follow her on Twitter @AshLaurenPerez

About What’s For Work?

The Premier Career Site for Women. http://www.whatsforwork.com

Mission: To redefine how employers acquire talent and women find and preserve their dream jobs using innovative technologies.

Company Overview: What’s For Work? helps women take control of their careers by providing a rich set of tools that develop their knowledge, skills and confidence they need to land and preserve their dream jobs.
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Organizational Tips for the Aggressive Job Seeker


by Ashley Lauren Perez

Female Job Seeker

Source: addisonlibrarycs.files.wordpress.com

Job seekers, I’ve been in your shoes before. Up until recently, I was aggressively trying to find work for about a six month stretch. At first, I simply looked at the job boards to see if anything new had come up and clicked the “send resume” button for anything that seemed to be a match. Needless to say, that didn’t yield too many job opportunities or interviews. I soon learned that my strategy needed to be completely re-vamped and involve more tactics to be able to get my resume exposed to the right people. I realized that this method was actually a job in itself and like any good “employee”, it is important to manage your time and stay organized in order to stay on top of things.

Job boards weren’t going to be enough. I decided that I needed to also go to different company websites and apply there individually; network with people; create a personal brand; create a social brand; participate in discussions and chats; and so on. To be effective, you need to take all of these steps, if not more. Trying to keep up with them can be overwhelming so I came up with an organizational plan:

  • Create a schedule to manage your time: In order to get the most out of your job search, you need to spend a good amount of time on each of these tactics. I bought white board that had the days of the week and scheduled blocks of time to focus on one particular tactic. This allowed me to dive right in each day and ensure I didn’t miss a valuable outlet for my job search.
  • Create resume templates: In order to get the highest “match” percentage when you apply to jobs via Applicant Tracking Systems, you must format your resume to have words/phrases that match what was in the job description. Create multiple templates (for different job roles you’re applying to) and make the few changes to customize it for each job you apply to.
  • Keep a folder of information: Whether it be a folder on your computer, e-mail, or a physical folder of print outs, it’s important to keep that information readily available. If a recruiter calls you, you want to be sure to have the job description and company information in front of you so you can easily wow them with your research and knowledge. Recruiters are instantly turned off by candidates that seemed to be “application happy” and seem to have no clue what job or company they applied to.
  • Create an Excel spreadsheet: make a list of jobs you applied to, date you applied, company name, recruiter information (if you have it), source you applied through, and people you networked with. This can allow you to keep track of what you need to follow up on or who to target when you’re spending time networking. Additionally, this can ensure that you aren’t applying multiple times to the same job or to multiple jobs within the same company. That usually is a red flag in recruiters’ eyes.

Job searching is a delicate balance of applying the right way, networking with the right people, and being prepared for an unscheduled phone call from the recruiter. Make sure you keep yourself organized so you can put your best foot forward during your hunt for opportunity.

About the Author

Ashley Lauren Perez

Ashley Lauren Perez is a talent acquisition specialist. Additionally, she is using her human resources and creative writing background to write a blog for managers, leaders, employees, and job seekers. This blog’s mission is meant to make a positive difference by being informative as well as inspiring. When Ashley isn’t writing, you can find her reading, partaking in outdoor activities, and embarking on adventures and travel.

Feel free to read more blogs written by Ashley at http://ashleylaurenperez.com. Or follow her on Twitter @AshLaurenPerez

About What’s For Work?

The Premier Career Site for Women. Real People. Real Connections. Real Support. — with everything in one place! http://www.whatsforwork.com/

Mission: To redefine how employers acquire talent and women find and preserve their dream jobs using innovative technologies.

Company Overview: What’s For Work? helps women take control of their careers by providing a rich set of tools that develop their knowledge, skills and confidence they need to land and preserve their dream jobs.
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