Working in an office can be a difficult task. Dealing with multiple types of people requires a deep knowledge of how to interact with others including the basics skills of networking 101. And there is no better place to network than at the next group or workplace gathering.
These gatherings are a place and time for you to chat with your colleagues and peers and get to know them better. In turn, these networking opportunities are designed to make the workplace a more positive and productive atmosphere.
Understanding basic people skills and practicing them at both sponsored and spontaneous gatherings with your coworkers is paramount to the success of your career. And often, they also determine the viability of the company itself.
Why go? People Trust People They Know!
Going after hours to a work place gathering isn’t everybody’s idea of fun. After a long day of work the last thing some people want to do is spend more time with their colleagues.
This is often times true with other social events as well. When you are asked to go to a gathering after a club meeting, fundraising event, or a sporting event, sometimes you just want to head home instead.
However, this is why it is such a big opportunity for you. Since a good amount of people will skip out on these events, it will give you the time to get to know your coworkers or peers better.
Having a deep bond and connection with those who you work with is very important. People trust people they know.
It is really hard for somebody to get to know you on a personal level if all you do is work together. When people know you on a personal level you have created a deeper connection with them.
This deeper connection between you and your peers means they trust you more. Furthermore, if somebody trust you, they will often put you in a position to take on more responsibility.
More responsibility will eventually lead to higher pay and for you to advance your career. This is one of the advantages of practicing the skills of networking 101!
Open Up To Your Peers
Take the time to be vulnerable and open up to your colleagues at the next workplace gathering. Tell them about your family, your background, and what you like to do for fun.
Don’t give them every detail, however, open up a little and share a few details that they might not know about you. And ask them about their interests outside of work. Listen with great intention and you’ll be surprised by how much you will learn by taking the time to talk to somebody outside of work.
Networking 101 – It’s Who You Know
Every person has heard the phrase “it’s not what you know, it’s who you know.” Love it or hate it, it is the truth.
Knowing how to network with people and spending the time to talk with those you work with on a human level is important.
This is basic networking 101. No matter how much talent and skills you have, if you do not know how to work with others you will not succeed.
Having a broad network spread across industries and jobs is important to getting the most out of your career. You need to have friends in all areas, including those in high places.
Knowing people who are in a position of authority can help advance your career. One way to make these connections is by going to the next workplace gathering.
These are the places you can make a lasting impression. Whether you are attending a fundraiser, hitting a few balls on the golf course, attending a retirement party, or attending the next happy hour event, the opportunities are there.
Although, making these connections are important because they may help advance your career in the long run, these connections need to be genuine.
It is a basic rule of networking 101 that ‘schmoozing’ people is not the way to get what you want. You have to make genuine connections. Stop asking about the next job opening, and instead, ask questions about interests, travel, family and other general, but personal information.
Although not guaranteed these genuine connections can make a big difference in how your career will end up. Remember, it’s not what you know, but it’s also who you know.
Networking 101 – How to Chat at a Workplace Gathering
Knowing the right things to say at your next group or workplace gathering is critical to networking. Have you ever been taking with a coworker or peer and didn’t know what to say?
Alternatively, have you ever felt awkward because you couldn’t carry on a conversation? Try these tips!
1. Let Them Do the Talking
The best way to be a good conversationalist is to let the other person do the talking. Ask them questions and just listen – this is one of the most important tips in networking 101.
Most people love to hear themselves talk – so let them! If somebody can open up and just express themselves, they will build trust with you.
When you get on a topic they seem passionate about, probe deeper by asking questions. For example, if they mention they were at their kids basketball game over the weekend you could ask them what sports they played growing up. Additionally, follow that up by asking what position they played or what their favorite memory was.
Anything to keep them talking! By letting the other person talk, you will be seen as a great listener. This is a trait all coworkers enjoy and respect.
2. Find Things In Common
When you strike up your conversation with your coworkers, strive to find something you have in common. The old saying that “opposites attract” is often not true when it comes to human relationships. On the other hand, a better phase is “birds of the same feather flock together”.
We like people who are like us. Additionally, we want to talk with people who have similar interest. Taking the time to get to know somebody and finding what you have in common is another great tip in networking 101.
At your workplace gather this is a perfect opportunity to find out what you have in common with your coworkers. Find what you both like to do on after work, on the weekend or even a similar food interest.
Make the connection and keep the conversation moving forward. The more of a thread you can pull through the similarities you have the better.
Additionally, truly try to get to know them in a genuine way. Not only will it make your work place a more positive environment, but who knows, you may also become friends outside of work.
In conclusion, take the time to go to those group or workplace gatherings. Use that time to converse about yourself, listen to others and find things in common, and your network will grow!
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