Networking 101: Coffee Dates

Hi Guys, so I was going through some of my popular content and I was seeing that you guys have found some of my job searching/career advice very helpful! So I have brainstormed more information on things that I have found useful.  Just a reminder that I worked on the recruiting side for a little and had my fair share of job searching.

Jumping right into today's post, one thing that REALLY helped me in a my job searching days was coffee dates.  If I had a contact or wanted to make one I would reach out to someone and ask to get coffee.  This is a nice more informal way to get some information, where it's about job openings, company culture or even just learning more about professions.  Coffee dates aren't just for job searching as well, you an also go to coffee dates with people in your company if you're interested in other positions and want more information!

Now just because these meetings are more informal that doesn't me don't look nice.  I would recommend business casual for these meetings. You still want to make a good impression!

Also most people are really open to coffee dates, which is awesome. Other people have been in your position and most people love talking about what they do.

Here are some of my tips to help you feel confident and prepared going into these meetings!

1. Bring a notepad - This is always helpful.  One it shows you're prepared. Two there have been many times that people have told me about resources or people and I have needed to jot them down.  Three it shows you're taking this meeting seriously.

2. Come with questions - People really do love talking about themselves, so I think its really helpful to come with questions asking how people got where they did if they have a position you're interested in. Make sure you have questions ready about the position and company culture.  Also don't just ask questions.  Make sure to chime in and add how your experience is relevant.  And connect the dots for the person about how you'd be a good fit.

3.  Try to get 3 new contact - My dad always told me this.  It seriously is such a good idea, a lot of the time people came ready with contact but if they didn't I asked if they knew of people I could reach out to.  This expands your networking group SO quickly.  I can't stress enough how helpful it is and also helps you constantly have more people to contact.

4. Offer to pay - Most people are older and will pay for your coffee but still this is a really nice gesture and goes a long way!

Soon I will be giving my advice on LinkedIn Messages.  So stay tuned! What do you think about Networking Coffee dates!