We Minnesotans enjoy our summer!
We just hit our first 90+ degree day; actually - we set a record - 98-degrees. (This follows a LONG winter - that seemed to only end a few days ago.) Everything slows down during the summer - offices seem to be vacant on Friday afternoons. It seems like 1 of every 3 Minnesotans are on vacation at any given time. And as of today (May 15th), we are less than 2 weeks away from Memorial Day - the unofficial start to summer.
Time to network!The work at any business continues. It does take longer for things to happen - summer heat, compressed work weeks (remember - vacant offices on Friday afternoon), vacations, etc. Positions still need to be filled - but getting interview teams together can take more time. With all that said, patios are starting to overflow - and people want to be outside. It is the season to . . . . . . network! There have been multiple articles that have appeared lately on the do's/don't's on networking. Most of the articles are a series of things not to do. A recent article by Sheila Ronning (President & CEO at Women in the Boardroom) gave 10 positive tips for networking. Her article, Ten Tips for Networking - What You Need to Know to Increase Who You Know is a great reminder list. The full text provides additional details, but here is a quick summary:
- Have a firm, confident handshake.
- Commit to meeting just three new people at an event.
- Do not make the conversation all about you. (Ask people questions to find what you have in common.)
- Jot down notes on the contact's business card.
- Excuse yourself politely (as a way to assure you meet others during the event).
- The networking doesn't end when the event is over. (HUGE lesson here - follow-up!)
- Dress for the occasion.
- Show up early. (Meeting people as they arrive is easier than walking up to established conversational groups.)
- Have plenty of business cards.
- Wear your nametag on your right side. (The tag moves forward when you extend your hand.)