Skip to main content
Communication, Art + Technology › Communication › Public + Community Relations
International Association of Business Communicators, Canadian Public Relations Society
SFU Co-op Student

two people shaking hands
Credit
pexels.com
A lot of students may be shy and not know what to say after a “hello”. Make sure you mitigate by preparing a selection of topics, such as what they thought of the keynote presenter’s speech, etc.

When it comes down to presenting yourself well to other people, networking is an essential and crucial skill to have. Simply put, networking is the process of building relationships with other people. In today’s world, a lot of people tend to say the job search process is now more about “who you know”, rather than “what you know”.  The main benefit of networking, however, allows you to find jobs, meet new people, and build long lasting relationships for mutual benefit. Knowing the right people allows you to get to places that you might not be able to reach otherwise.

Like the job interview or the final exam, the best thing you can do is to prepare, practice, prepare, and practice some more! When you go to networking events, they usually have a theme, and this will help you shape your focus and the questions to ask. For example, if you are going to a marketing networking event, expect to see industry professionals who have an interest in marketing.

So now you are at the networking event.  What’s next? Well, the next thing you need to do is master your elevator pitch.  Basically, this pitch is a sixty second spiel in which you try to sell yourself to the other person. Whether the person you talk to is your next employer or not, being able to portray yourself well will definitely impress the other person, and even if nothing happens of the conversation, you may still gain a warm contact.

The next thing you must do is to stay interested and ask a lot of questions. A lot of students may be shy and not know what to say after a “hello”. Make sure you mitigate by preparing a selection of topics, such as what they thought of the keynote presenter’s speech, etc. Also, people love talking about themselves, so if you are able to keep asking questions about their work or how they got there, the more they’ll talk and like you.

Finally, do not forget to follow up. After you finish up your conversation, ask for their business card, and give them yours. It also does not hurt to ask if you may add them on LinkedIn! After you walk away, write down some interesting details about the person or the conversation you just had on the back of his/her business card. This way, when you follow-up the next few days in an e-mail, you are able to reference something you two had talked about. If you can master all the above skills, you will be a master networker in no time!

International Association of Business Communicators, Canadian Public Relations Society
SFU Co-op Student
Mike Wong is an aspiring Public Relations Professional, interested in Crisis Communications and Content Strategy. Connect with Mike on Twitter.
visibility  62
Nov 21, 2012

You Might Like These... Volunteering, Community Engagement, Professional Development, Personal Development, Life Balance

STC West Coast
Alumnus Profile: How Crystal Kwon Advanced Her Career Through Volunteerism

Students often overlook one important benefit of volunteerism. While students realize that scholarships and bursaries usually require community engagement, they often forget that volunteerism can also give you the edge you need after you finish your degree.

Kyle and volunteers
Kyle Jung: Expand Your Horizons through Volunteering

Did you know that you can make a difference through volunteering, as well as discovering your passions and career goals? These are just some of the benefits of volunteering, according to Kyle Jung, a 5th-year SIAT student who is also the Vice President of Operations, Interactive Arts & Technology Student Union (IATSU) and the SFSS Forum Representative.

Volunteers
Jordan Robinson: Volunteer, Learn & Have Fun!

Do you want to improve your writing and communications skills? Do you want to meet other SFU students? If you answered “yes” to any of the two questions, becoming a peer educator may just be right for you! Let Jordan Robinson, a 4th-year Sociology student, tell you what valuable skills and experiences.

You Might Like These... First Weeks on the Job

Image of the Author
Top Ten Tips for Co-op Work Term Success

John Grant, an SFU Communication Co-op Alumus has five work term experiences in his portfolio and shares his top ten tips for completing a successful and fulfilling Co-op work term.

A student working alone in a library
Life as an International Student: The Things We Don't Talk About

There are a lot of things your international student friends have never told you. From depression to pressure to stereotypes -  life isn't always easy when you are studying abroad. Read an international students take on life overseas. 

Jason Yeh and his friend posing behind a tree
15 Things You Should Keep Doing No Matter What | Part One

As we continue our journey through life, we experience a myriad of events, emotions, and people. Some of these we bump into regularly because of their worth. Here are 15 things you should keep doing no matter what.