Ep. 053: How to Make the Most of a Networking Event, with Angela Copeland

If the purpose of networking is to build relationships, then why would you only network when you are job hunting? Guest expert, Angela Copeland says it takes time for someone to get to know you, so start networking now. If you are unsure of  where to find information about networking events, Angela suggests to look online for associations or groups in your field of work, contact the local Chamber of Commerce or go to Meetup.com. You may feel more comfortable at a networking event that is a good fit for you. It’s advisable to target events where you have a decent chance of meeting people in your field, you can really connect to. Pro Tip — If you are looking to change fields, have business cards made with your contact information, leaving off your current field of work. It’s okay if you find professional events awkward and scary, everyone else who is there feels the same way. Angela recommends going to networking events alone and being on the lookout for someone who is also there alone. If a person is deeply engaged in conversation with another person, you are less likely to make an impact if you approach. If you do approach someone, ask them personal questions. Personal questions can open people up and help to form a deeper connection. Remember, the person who lands a job is not always the most qualified. It is the person the hiring manager likes the most or has a connection with. Networking Event Do’s: Do have a pitch about yourself in case someone asks. Do make a positive first impression through body language, a smile and being properly dressed for the occasion. Do make sure to be pleasant and authentic. Do ask personal questions instead of business questions. Do learn something new. Do follow up with an email or LinkedIn connection with every person you meet. Networking Event Dont’s: Don’t talk about your job search. Don’t just talk with the person who attended with you. Don’t forget networking and relationship building takes time. Don’t get discouraged if you don’t make a connection at the event. Shake everyone’s hand firmly and be pleasant! Angela Copeland Bio Angela Copeland is the CEO of Copeland Coaching. Her firm helps people at all stages of the job search process, including finding the right job, interviewing for a position, and negotiating an offer. Angela is the author of Breaking The Rules and Getting The Job. She also hosts the Copeland Coaching Podcast and writes a weekly syndicated newspaper column on careers. If you would like to follow Angela on Twitter, @CopelandCoach is her handle. Ben’s Job Search Resources: Ben shares a LinkedIn post from Melissa De Witte Do-It-Yourself Headshots - And You Can Even Use Your iPhone. The article includes the exact steps and settings you will need to get a professional looking headshot, which is essential for your LinkedIn profile. Jenna’s Find Your Dream Job Listener Question: Ben, Jenna and Mac provide feedback to Pat Guiles’ audio question — “How should I inform my previous employer about my new job?” If you would like the team to answer a job-related question, email it to jenna@macslist.org or call her at 716-JOB-TALK. Or if you’ve found a job resource you think everyone should know about, send it to ben@macslist.org and tell him how it has helped you find your dream job. These segments are sponsored by the 2016 edition of Hack the Hidden Job Market Course. The course launches November 1st — Lock in your early bird pricing now. If you like this show, please help us by rating and reviewing our podcast on iTunes. We appreciate your support! Opening and closing music for Find Your Dream Job provided by Freddy Trujillo, www.freddytrujillo.com.

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