Last Chance to Register for Oct 5th 12 Rules of Effective Networking Webinar

3 10 2011

Being a strong networker can mean the difference between getting a great job offer and remaining unemployed. On the job, your network can help you stay employed when the lay-off cycle comes around. Register today to learn how to further develop your networking skills!

Yes, it’s your last chance to sign up for my FREE, thanks to UnitedHealth Group, webinar on Oct 5, 2011 for Out & Equal Workplace Advocates:

12 Rules of Effective Networking – http://ow.ly/66NHD (To register.)

The webinar is hosted by Out & Equal’s LGBTCareerLink, a great and supportive resource, and is a repeat of one I did for them last year – they have over 500 sign-ups already! (Last year they had 200!)

Here’s what some of the attendees said about last year’s webinar:
“She breaks down networking, a process that used to mystify me, into practical steps.”

“Frankly, networkers turn me off with their pushiness. I prefer Sandy’s approach which shows how networking is actually sharing in the spirit of community service.”

“I’m not outgoing naturally and I often don’t know what to say to people I don’t know. Sandy changed all that for me.”

“I work for a high-profile company where people are always trying to network with me to get a job. They go about it the wrong way by being in it for themselves and even pestering me. I will be recommending Sandy’s “12 Rules” webinar to them!”

Hope you can join us! Register here.





How To Go It Solo at a Networking Event

2 08 2011

I’ve recently been asked to share my advice on how best to approach attending an in-person networking event when you have to go it alone, so I thought I’d just provide access to a PDF of the Nov. 2010 article I wrote for the now (sadly) defunct site: WomenEntrepreneur.com.

I’m also including a link to the article via Box.net. Please feel free to share it with others, and because the site where it first appeared no longer exists, I’m also reprinting a few of the tips I included in it here. Please let me know if you try either of these and how they turn out for you. 🙂

Two additional pieces of advice that I’ve used and have seen help solo attendees again and again:

1. Find the event’s host(s) or any of its sponsors and introduce yourself to them with the same warm smile and handshake as above, and then thank them for hosting and/or sponsoring the event. Remember, these people are hosting the event and they want everyone there to have a good experience — just as you would if you were hosting a party or event. You can then ask about their connection to or role with the group/event and find out what their goals are for the evening. You might be surprised by what you learn, and maybe you’ll discover a few ways you might help them.

If nothing comes to mind immediately, ask for a business card and make a note of their need on the back of it. Let them know you’ll be in touch if you come across whatever it is they need. At that point, explain what made you attend the event and your own goals for attending, and just wait and see what happens next. More often than not, they just might try to help you connect with other folks at the event or will follow up with you via e-mail or phone.

2. Get in line for something, whether it’s food, drink or the bathroom (seriously). Use that time to ask the person of your choice (in front or behind you) if she’s connected to the event or a member, or know anyone who was nominated. Or if it’s someone you know slightly, try one of my all-time favorite openers, which anyone can answer: Find out what they’re working on. For example, “Hi Britney, good to see you. Sandy Jones-Kaminski from Bella Domain (in case she looks like she doesn’t remember you); we met at the spring luncheon. How are things going? (Let them answer.) So what are you working on these days? Anything exciting?”

Sometimes the answer is something fun, like planning a trip to Australia. Or it might even be something you can assist them with by connecting them to a resource. If there aren’t any lines at the event, just look around for another solo person and practice any of the techniques mentioned above. I’ve met some of my favorite contacts that way, and they now make it a practice to do the same thing whenever they attend any type of event.





Help Me Help You: Tell Me What You WANT To Do Next and WHERE You Want To Do It

22 04 2011

Now that I’ve wrapped up my first 2 weeks in my new role as a full-time employee for FILTER, a digital solutions agency for staffing and creative services in San Francisco (and Seattle, LA, Portland), it’s finally time for me to put this request in writing because, quite frankly, helping people connect with employers in my new job pretty much depends on it. JessicaMillerMerrell.com birds

When I meet you out and about at an event, on a BART train, in line at Specialty’s or at a board meeting, please tell me NOT what you’ve done, but what you really WANT to do next and WHERE you want to do it. Give me a few titles or roles I can remember and a few company names I can latch onto so I can keep an eye out for them when I’m out there doing my thing.

And for those in both Seattle and San Francisco, be sure to tell me where you DO NOT want to work as well. We all have our lists of both, so don’t be coy and act like you’ll take any job because, even as bad as things have been, we all know that unemployment has been a much more desirable option than taking a job at a place with a commute that’ll kill you and/or destroy your relationships, or at a place like “the Death Star” (don’t ask).

If you’re worried that you’re limiting yourself by this, when you go to your next event, or send your next “I’d like to meet for coffee to reconnect” email, be sure to tell that person 2-3 different roles and/or company names so you can plant a variety of seeds in your garden. Help them help you! 🙂