“Hello, I’m Marie and you are?” Yes, networking can be awkward. Most of us hate to do it and rely on the standard introductions and questions. How many times have you been asked or asked someone, “What do you do?” To be good at networking, you must understand your goal.
Your networking goal is to make a connection, so you want to find common ground with the person and asking them what they do might not be the best way. You want to connect so that you can build a strong future connection. While it might not always work, try asking questions that might get you a step closer to your goal.
Try this networking questions:
1. I’m an alumni of XZY, where did you go to school?
2. Are you from the area? Any things I should do/see?
3. This is my first day here, any speaker recommendations?
4. Can you give me any advice on breaking into you company?
5. If you could change careers to anything, what would you do?
Ask questions that interest you. Be curious. It might make you a connection or even a new friend.