Men's Life Today: Expert Q+A
I’m reuniting with a bunch of old classmates I haven’t seen in a while. Professionally and socially, how do I make the most of this gathering?
Before you get together, send your classmates an update -- and give them a link to your LinkedIn or Facebook page -- so when you meet, you’ll already have points of reference; things to talk about.
In person, you’ll want to have nice enough conversations that you can follow up with a phone call or conversation afterward. If you’re looking for business, keep in mind that the setting is social, so you’re never going to close a deal then or there. Talk too much about work, and you’ll freak them out. There will be time for that later.
Another thing I try to do is find out how I can help other people -- more than how they can help me. It pays off. If I have a friend in their business or know someone who can help them out, I try to be the conduit, the connector.
Getting ahead in your career is 90 to 95 percent networking, and it’s based upon the trust that you build up in your personal relationships.