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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:
  1. Have a firm, confident handshake.
  2. Commit to meeting just three new people at an event.
  3. Do not make the conversation all about you.  (Ask people questions to find what you have in common.)
  4. Jot down notes on the contact's business card.
  5. Excuse yourself politely (as a way to assure you meet others during the event).
  6. The networking doesn't end when the event is over.  (HUGE lesson here - follow-up!)
  7. Dress for the occasion.
  8. Show up early.  (Meeting people as they arrive is easier than walking up to established conversational groups.)
  9. Have plenty of business cards.
  10. Wear your nametag on your right side.  (The tag moves forward when you extend your hand.)

Wishing you all a fun, warm and productive summer.