5 Tips for Networking Success

Number 1. Dress for Success– If you know that you are going to be networking you should always dress professional. A good idea would be to check ahead of time to see if the event is business casual or business professional and dress accordingly.

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Number 2. Have Your Elevator Pitch Ready to Recite– It is important that you practice it before you go out and start giving it to every person you meet because it may need some fine tuning. Once you memorize it, you need to make sure that you practice to your friends, family, or even dog (or if you are one of those people who prefers cats) so it doesn’t have the same inflection of someone reading it out loud.

Number 3. Be Confident– Employers are looking for confident young men and women to hire and that could very well be you. Maybe you have talked to some people at the event and it does not seem to be going well for you. Don’t let that get you down because it only takes one person to like you and ask you to come in for an interview. Now don’t get overconfident and think that every single person in the room wants to hire you, because that most likely isn’t the case. The worst thing that can happen is that they don’t hire you, so keep trying.

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Number 4. Have a Resume Ready– Now this one doesn’t apply every time you are networking, but if you know that you are going to be networking beforehand, it is always good to have a few resumes ready nearby to hand out if need be. Another good thing to have is a Linked In account. That way you can have you past work experiences with you at all times in case you don’t have a resume ready to hand to an employer you meet at an event.

Number 5. Be Classy– These are a few things to keep in mind when you are actually at the event. First of all, if there is a bar, no more than one drink. Assuming that you are of age, this is not Red Dogs at 1 am, this is an event where you are trying to make connections that can get you employed, not the beach bars. Next thing you need to remember is to hold all drinks in your left hand. It does not matter what your dominant hand is, you shake hands with your right hand and no one wants to touch a cold, wet hand. Last thing is don’t be rude. You will be talking to a lot of people and you don’t want to give them the impression that you are rude. Well really you should never be rude, but especially at an event like this. Give them a positive memory of you and you will have a job in no time.

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45 thoughts on “5 Tips for Networking Success

  1. These were great tips one in particular that stood out to me was having not only a resume, but having a Linked in account. I always bring a resume when networking just in case, but have yet to set up a Linked in account. Another thing was the part about always holding your drink in your left hand because you always shake with your right. Very good information.

  2. All five of your points are very valid. People fail to realize how important appearance and preparation are when it comes to networking. Sometimes just being able to communicate effectively is not sufficient enough.

  3. Growing up, my dad always taught me these rules when talking to adults and other professionals. When I had my very first job, my instructor always told me to have a suit ready, positive attitude, and to act like someone was watching you everyday. That has helped me come a long way over the years. I agree completely with what this article has to say and would strongly recommend this to anyone who is looking forward to advancing in their career.

  4. I found this post particularly interesting, because I am quickly approaching graduation and thinking about jobs. I think everyone can relate to the nerves that surround events like applying for jobs or going on job interviews. The tips you listed are a great way to ensure graduates are prepared when beginning this process. Being prepared eases the mind if only a little.

  5. Personally, I have found that networking si the most key component to finding a job after college, besides the degree itself of course. Being a member of a greek organization has helped me tremendously with networking, and I encourage anyone who has not already to atlas try out greek life. The benefits in the job market have been tremendous for many of my brothers, many of the times only requiring a brother to submit an application, then another brother that works with the company will give a great recommendation the the boss man and Voila! Just like that, networking just landed you a career.

  6. These tips remind me a lot of Dr. Weber’s rules for public speaking in the fact that if carried out correctly, they are nearly foolproof. I feel that our generation sometimes forgets the importance of a good impression. It’s not what you know, but who you know! I had also never heard that tip about only holding a drink in your left hand, I thought that was very creative. Also, my appreciation of Tom Haverford gifs will never die.

  7. I think these 5 points are all extremely on point and accurate. People often underestimate the power of a first impression and the importance of appearance. Business isn’t all about looks but t is about the way that you want to carry and represent your self. You always want to keep those two things in mind while networking because you want others to see the potential that you see in your self

  8. This could all be considered being prepared. Preparation is vital to success. I learned a set of 6 P’s that help me live responsibly. Prior Planning Prevents Piss-Poor Performance. This phrase emphasizes the importance of preparing for things that you want to succeed at. Know about the company you’re interviewing with, know about the person interviewing you, and dress for success. These things will make you stand out to employers.

  9. I never understood the importance of these rules until recently, and I always thought appearances didn’t matter as long as you had the skills. I think yes, the skills will be more important when actually doing your job, but your appearance shows that you care what your employer thinks of you, which makes them more likely to hire you, as well as what people will think of the image of your company/place of employment.

  10. Wow! This is so helpful! As a com major with a digital arts minor, a lot of potential jobs will (or won’t) arise through networking and connections. Unfortunately this isn’t something that is always taught. I really enjoyed reading this and would highly recommend to anyone with a networking heavy major or career path!

  11. I think all five of these points are extremely helpful, and feel like people oftentimes forget the importance of some of these tips. Appearance is very important in creating a good first impression, so dressing for the occasion is something that should not be an afterthought.

  12. I agree with all of the advise in this list, but mostly with number 3! I feel that confidence really shows in everything you do, and it can really help one with networking.

  13. I really enjoyed the way you laid out all of your points. something that stood out to me was having a LinkedIn. Since I have gotten a LinkedIn account, my life has been made so much simpler between applying to places, or just making connections to people. Resumes are cool, but LinkedIn’s are even cooler!

  14. All these tips are so helpful! I am about to start applying for different jobs and internships and these tips will help me to make sure I’m well prepared. Thanks!

  15. This was such a great read! I am not one of the “young” men/women that you speak of, I am over 40, but the logic still applies. Staying Classy is always key and being prepared is a must. I really liked your advice on keeping your drink in the left hand. That is something I had never thought of before. Great advice. Thank you.

  16. Each point in this article is essential to the interview process. I have had over 10 interviews now in my 23 years and have only been denied from one job due to lack of experience. something that isnt mentioned in this article; however, is the to just be relaxed and be yourself. Hopefully yourself is a very competent and enjoyable person to be around, but non the less strive to be yourself. You’ll know right away if the job is the right fit for you if you are open and clear about your intentions.

  17. Job hunting really is about reaching out, networking and leaving a good lasting impression. After your interaction you want to have your “connection” imagining you in a place in their company. These five point are really good tips on how to make networking successful. I really like the last tip, because that is something that can be overlooked and leave the wrong impression with your connection. Keeping your one drink in your left hand is a simple way to avoid the making of a wrong impression. Good tips!

  18. I love all of these tips! I definitely have an “elevator pitch” I give to people when I meet them, and I have been shaping it over the past year or so. I try to be confident too when I am networking, by approaching people first and making eye contact while talking to them rather than appearing distracted. I might start carrying my resume around, though!

  19. This post is a nice reminder to always be self-aware. At any given time, you could cross paths with a potential employer. Your first impression is there best indicator of how you would represent them and their business. The post itself was on the informal side which always appeals to me. However, towards the end, it has a bossy/condescending tone which was less appealing. Some of the details provided, like holding your drink in your left hand, were a nice touch.

  20. I found these tips to be very helpful. Although I am only a sophomore and haven’t applied for any “real” jobs yet, I will definitely remember these in the future. They will also be very helpful in smaller ways such as project presentations and networking at COM studies events. I also really like the added gifs!

  21. These are all very important aspects that tie into the overall success of an interview. I have been through a few interviews myself in my 21 years and I believe that everyone of these aspects was a factor during my interview that I considered prior to the interview. I specifically liked the point about being classy. Actions speak louder than words and during an interview there is little room to show actions so when the situation arises it is important to be the most effective possible. Also I agree that being yourself is very important. Don’t try to be the person you think fits the role instead be yourself and see if you fit the role.

  22. This is a great article. I think every student can benefit from putting into action the tips giving in this article. I am really drawn to the part about having practiced and perfected your elevator pitch. A lot of times people have a tough time talking about their strengths and what specifically they can offer an employer. If you practice your elevator pitch with a friend you will become fine-tuned and ready to pitch yourself to an potential employer when needed.

  23. I think that all five points are really important for networking. I think when it comes to job hunting making a first good impression is key when talking to a future employer because that first impression they get of you, usually is what they see you as from then on out. One tip that I liked is being confident because I know going to a job interview can be scary and intimidating to people. Sometimes that can effect you in getting the job or not.

  24. I definitely agree with all five points that were made. Also, I feel like when you dress the part, that alone can help boost your confidence. I know, personally, when I have big exams, I always try to dress up a little more than I would on an average school day because I firmly believe in the saying “dress well, test well.” So I guess what I’m saying is that the same idea applies to job interviews… “dress well, interview well.” Also, while it’s important to be confident, it’s also important to not get cocky and, like was mentioned, to stay classy. All were very valid points.

  25. I think that all of these points are very helpful. The tip about keeping your drink in your left hand so your right hand stays clean is something that I would have never thought of. Although most of these tips and ideas are meticulous things that seem insignificant, these are the things that future employers pay attention to, so it’s extremely helpful to keep these things in mind.

  26. These tips are so helpful especially for anyone entering the work force. These are also really important attending anything work related. Manners and class matter and it is important to leave a good impression. I had no idea about holding your drink with your left hand! That is something I’m going to remember whenever I attend an event.

  27. I found all these tips to be very helpful! The reminder about Confidence is especially crucial in my experience, because I often find myself subconscious and feeling not like my usual outgoing personality when I am in a scenario that presents a business opportunity. These tips are relevant to where I am in seeking a career currently, and I will scan them and implement them in to my practice for networking!

  28. I found all these tips to be very helpful! The reminder about Confidence is especially crucial in my experience, because I often find myself subconscious and feeling not like my usual outgoing personality when I am in a scenario that presents a business opportunity. These tips are relevant to where I am in seeking a career currently, and I will scan them and implement them in to my practice for networking!

  29. I am very glad that i took public speaking in UNCW because i got a chance to learn some of the attributes mentioned above. The five points you have given are awesome! some people don’t really think about some of this stuff. I’m glad that you reminded me of how to be a better networker!

  30. Networking is the best! In the four years I have been practicing journalism, networking with people who are already established in the field has been my number-one way of opening up bigger opportunities down the road. For example, covering sporting events for The Seahawk (UNCW’s student newspaper) allowed me to get to know writers at the StarNews here in Wilmington. Now, more than a year later, I am a freelance “sports correspondent” for the StarNews covering high school sports and local sports stories. Never be afraid of getting your foot in the door in any way you can because you never know what it may lead toward.

  31. I have noticed that a lot of people don’t know what business or business casual dress is and I would say that is a very important part when networking. Employers want someone who looks professional because it shows you care. I would say for me, I would need to work on confidence because employers do want to hire people who are confident.

  32. I found your 5 tips very helpful. Networking can be extremely daunting especially for me as a sophomore who has done little to no networking. Your 5 tips really helped focus on what was important in a networking situation and how to really be successful at it. Your tip on the elevator pitch was not something I had ever put much thought into but after reading your article it is definitely something that I want to try and perfect. I also loved the graphics you used, it brought humor to a slightly serious topic which I really enjoyed.

  33. I like all these tips a lot. I think rehearsing your pitch is incredibly underrated. I feel like a lot of people feel like they can just wing it and then don’t realize how hard that is to do as they fumble words and stutter during their sentances. The tip on confidence is really important as well. Just saying what you have to say with confidence makes you seem more believable and credible.

  34. I really enjoyed reading that article. I think number 3 is the most important, being confident. My mom always told me that confidence is the key to life and can open a lot of opportunities. Job interviews are very intimidating, but if you come prepared and listen to these tips you should get the job!

  35. I think it is so important to give this type of advice over and over! This is the type of thing that needs to be drilled into people because it is so easy to forget everything when you get nervous. If these tips are heard over and over again then they become second nature and will help so much in any type of business discussion.

  36. Rule Number 5. Be Classy. Undoubtedly the one that often gets lost while trying to plan the perfect outfit and make sure you have the perfectly constructed resume. I am not saying that you should ever alter your personality when interacting with anyone, but I think that being reserved and “classy” in a networking situation could only benefit you in the end. There is defiantly truth to giving too much of yourself too soon. Good tips- I have never actually considered reciting my personal “sales pitch” to anyone, but that is a very good way to become comfortable saying it in front of an actually person (or a cat).

  37. I’ve found this article very accurate, and I’ve learn new tips too like not holding a drink with your right hand because that’s the one we shake hands with. I never thought about it but I’m glad to know it now! I was already familiar with “Dress for success” and “Be classy” thanks to my high school teacher, she always stressed the importance of this two topics, and the fact that you can only give a first impression once!

  38. The idea of networking events can be really overwhelming when you are not really into a particular field yet. These tips are great! Having a “spiel” ready to go is definitely key, but so is having the ability to tweak that depending on the situation. I love the tip about keeping the drink in your left hand! That is definitely something that would slip my mind in the presence of nerves so I will make sure to keep it in mind.

  39. Sometimes people fail to realize how important all these key factors are when going in for an interview. I remember my first interview. I was in high school and I can honestly say that I was more confident then, than I am now. But reading these tips helps to encourage me to be more confident when being interviewed. After all, everyone needs to know these things.

  40. During COM Studies Day, they emphasized how important it was to have a resume ready when networking. I don’t network often but I honestly didn’t realize how important it was until now. I also never heard of an elevator pitch and now that I think about it, it would be extremely useful when people are networking.

  41. I thought all five of these tips were definitely crucial in networking. I thought your point about how/where to hold your drink was great information! I had never even thought of that before, but now that I will soon be 21, I’m glad I now will know what to do in a situation like that. Having your resume ready was also a helpful tip I will now keep in mind!

  42. All of these tips are vital to networking. I feel one very important thing when making a first impression in a man to man interaction is to have a strong handshake. Having a strong handshake is an expectation when making that initial male to male interaction. Always look presentable is something you can not forget about, it is the first thing people see when they look at you. I agree you should always “Dress for Success”

  43. I really enjoyed reading these tips. First off, I thought that the delivery of them was easy to read but also allowed space for detail. I also thought that including pop culture gifs really added to the understanding of each tip. Secondly, I thought that these tips were really unique and applicable to almost everyone no matter what major they are in. I specifically like the one about holding your drink in your left hand. This is definitely something that I would have never thought of before and will certainly use it in the future.

  44. These tips were very helpful! For someone who is not the best at networking, its great to get advice on what I can do to improve. I am going to start applying for Internships soon and this will definitely help me prepare for them. Also, holding your drink in your left hand is a great point, I never really thought about it.

  45. In this post you talked about something everyone should be aware of. To be a part of the business world you must follow these guidelines to succeed. Thanks for the information! it definitely will help in the future.

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