Posts tagged networking
If you play it safe now, you’re going to sell yourself short in the end. 

We’ve all heard the saying, If you are the smartest person in the room, find a different room. 

Why? Smart people make you smarter. It’s as simple as that. Yahoo! CEO Marissa Mayer has an anecdote that sums up why.

She says, “Laura Beckman was the daughter of my piano teacher and a great volleyball player. was given the choice of joining the varsity team, where she would sit on the bench for the year, or junior varsity, where she would start every game.

“Laura shocked everyone and chose varsity. The next year she came back as a senior, made varsity again and was a starter. The rest of the players who had been on junior varsity were benched for their entire senior year. 

I asked Laura: ‘How did you know to pick varsity?’ Laura told me: ‘I just knew if I got to practice and play alongside the best players every day, it would make me better. And that’s exactly what happened.’ The same thing happens in the professional workplace.”

The road to success is NOT a straight path. You can climb the corporate ladder but in the end you’re going to come in second to someone like Laura.

So take Laura’s approach. Think long term and think strategy! 

Be humble. No one in their 20s has truly made it. If you think you’ve peaked, it’s time to find another mountain. Your 20s are the time to learn and grow. Don’t think money, think strategy. Work for free, ask for guidance, build your network, surround yourself with successful people who inspire you to up your game, do whatever it takes to gather as much knowledge and experience as you possibly can. 

If you play it safe now, you’re going to sell yourself short in the end. 

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The Introverts Guide to Fearless Networking

We all know networking is important but as an introvert it honestly can suck and cause major anxiety. So, if that’s you, how do you conquer this skill? Here’s my top tips that have and continue to help me throughout my career. 

1. Firm hand shake, eye contact, no gum! - self explanatory

2. Know your sh*t - when you know what your talking about it inside and out it is soooo much easier to present it when you’re put on the spot! 

3. Take control of the convo - ask the questions! When you are leading the conversation and asking the questions you don’t have to worry about what’s coming next. Instead you can relax and focus on being present! 

4. Ask them questions about themselves - people love to talk about themselves and it actually makes the conversation more memorable to them. Plus it takes the pressure off of you! win/win

5. Be yourself - don’t try to be the chattiest person in the room if that’s not your personality! Be confident in who you are and what you bring to the table. Chances are the real you is pretty great so let that shine! 

6. Always be gracious. Please and thank you are not just something you learn as a kid. Manners matter! Especially when it comes to making a first impression.

7. BE BRAVE! When it comes to networking nobody is too important or too high up for you to introduce yourself too. Take a deep breath, fix your hair (if you have hair), and march yourself over to them and say hello.

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