By Amber N. Anderson
We’ve all heard the phrase, “It’s not what you know, but who you know.” This statement is much more factual than you think. One of the most important keys to being successful is networking. The more you network with people, the more opportunities that will come your way. Listed below are a few of the networking tips I believe will help high school students secure the bag for internships, jobs, college acceptances, and scholarship dollars.
Tip #1: Hand Shakes & Eye Contact
According to Forbes, “A Fortune 500 CEO once said that when he had to choose between two candidates with similar qualifications, he gave the position to the candidate with the better handshake.” Ensuring that you have a firm handshake and make eye contact when speaking to someone is very important. And just a friendly reminder to always shake someone’s hand using your right hand.
Tip #2: Elevator Pitch
When networking, you should already have your elevator pitch ready to go. An elevator pitch is a succinct and persuasive sales pitch. Keywords, ‘sales pitch.’you should be able to sale yourself. Your elevator pitch should be no longer than a minute. e concise, detailed, but straight to the point. Your elevator pitch should leave a mark on the individual you are speaking with., The main goal is to make sure you are someone they will want to remember. Most importantly, simply be yourself.
Tip #3: Build Bridges
Often times when people network, they are only focusing on how that individual can help them, rather than how they can extend an arm of help as well. When explaining how someone can help you, make sure that you mention how you can help them as well.
Tip #4: Follow-Up
The most important part about networking is ensuring that you keep in contact. Try to build a relationship. After meeting, always send a follow-up email, at least 1-2 days after the networking encounter. Anything longer than one to two days, they may forget who you are. Make sure in your email you include your name and where you met so they can remember.