Ah Spring, the sun goes longer, the flowers bloom, the pool is open, baseball starting, people going outside. You know what’s another great activity for spring? Networking.
This is a great time to network because employers have more options to hold events and this is where people are looking for options either you’re transitioning or a recent graduate.
At this time of season, bars and restaurants open up their outdoor patios or rooftops to accommodate bigger crowds and a great time to mingle. Before you network, here are four things you need to do:
1. Look Who is Attending
Do research on what event you’re attending if it’s a general happy hour, a sponsored event, or an industry event. If the attendance list is there, take a look and see who you want to network. If not, go to the event early and look whose attending and assess and act as the unofficial greeter.
2. Bring Your Info
Have business cards with to hand out or take pictures with other attendees. If you do not have cards because you forgot or the cost, mention you have a Linkedin profile or a personal account so people can access and connect with you there on the spot.
When you have made a connection, follow-up within one week of the event and mention about the event and what you discuss in the conversation and thank them for connecting and meeting them.
4. Have Fun
This is the most overlooked aspect of networking. You should have a plan who you want to talk to, but enjoy yourself at the event. Do not look for just people who have job opportunities; find some commonalities by looking what outfit they’re wearing, if they are intrigued on something on TV, if they have a tattoo that you like, there’s something you can talk about.
Networking can be stressful because you want to have something before the end of the night, but it is about planting the seed of a relationship to grow for future opportunities and beyond. Do not look for jobs, look for relationships.
If you need help on your job search, contact us or go to our job board for our open opportunities.
Tracy Tran is the Sourcer and Social Media Specialist for The HR SOURCE.