It’s not necessarily fun – even for the host or facilitator tries to make it so. It can be a very stressful event especially for those who have never had to relate on this level in their career (so far). Walking into that room, making eye contact with strangers, shaking hands (not always pleasant), wondering who should speak first – are just a few of those anxious points of reference when thinking about networking.
People network in business settings — chamber of commerce events, industry trade shows and conferences, training sessions, even speed dating is a kind of networking. Many business-supportive organizations host speed networking sessions in order to put some fun into a presumably unsettling experience.
It doesn’t have to be so anxiety ridden. We talk about being prepared for interviews a lot. Well, we should be prepared for this type of mass-meeting-think-on-your-feet opportunity as well.
Here are just 5 suggestions for questions/topics to make your next career networking experience a bit more productive and comfortable one — and as it just might turn out, a more effective one!
- What advise would you give to someone who is interested in your field; or the company you work(ed) for?
- Which online sites have you had the most success with posting your resume?
- Are you considering any classes or certifications to increase your potential of getting that next job?
- and to someone out of work a year or more: How do you stay abreast of the newest trends or just the news in your field?
- Have you ever thought about working for yourself – and starting a business?
- challenges in the online job application process
- difficult interview questions
- technology obstacles or lack of familiarity