networking

Ugh, networking. It’s actually not as terrible as you think. Mostly.

I was hit on at a conference … was I too friendly?

A reader writes: My spouse and I are in the same field and usually attend conferences together. Generally we don’t spend that much time together at conferences, touching base a couple of times throughout the day (often mostly via text) and then having dinner and going to the room together, but people know we’re married. […]

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how many times can I ask a networking contact for help?

A reader writes: How many times is it appropriate to reach out to networking contacts for informational interviews, referrals, connections, etc.? I have been searching on and off over the past two years. I don’t want to take advantage of my older networking contacts who have already helped me, and I would certainly return any […]

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should I let my parents help me network?

It’s the Thursday “ask the readers” question. A reader writes: My question is about networking and family. My parents and I are in the same field, and I definitely was helped from the very beginning of my career by their experience and connections. Now that I’m finishing graduate school however, I feel that I want […]

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how do I get away from clingy networkers at events?

A reader writes: I am fortunate to be fairly well-known in my field and attend a lot of professional events. I try to meet as many new people and existing contacts as possible during these events, as part of my purpose in attending is to make the contacts I need to do my work. At […]

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is networking overrated?

A reader writes: Job searching advice usually focuses heavily on networking, and while I know you emphasize it less than others, you have also written about the importance of reputation-building and networking. This … doesn’t really match my experience. I don’t have much of a professional network, despite graduating five years ago and working for […]

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how can I avoid business contacts who just want to pitch me?

A reader writes: I often get requests for phone conversations from people in related industries who want to “ask my opinion” about some aspect of my area of expertise. After 30 minutes of conversation, it always turns into a sales pitch for whatever product they’re working on or company they’re consulting for. I find this […]

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how do you network in the era of Covid?

It’s the Thursday “ask the readers” question. A reader writes: I live in an area with a lot of rules around the pandemic still — masks are mandated for indoor public spaces, many orgs are (wisely) still offering many things online, universities and such are mandating students and staff be vaccinated to come on campus/ […]

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can I turn a request for free help into paid consulting?

A reader writes: I work in a pretty specific niche area. I was recently at a conference describing my work, and a leader from another organization came up to me to ask me how he could find someone like me to work for him. I emailed him some information about the graduate school I attended, […]

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should you connect with strangers on LinkedIn?

A reader writes: I work in an industry that’s largely freelance, with a massive component of networking and word-of-mouth. But almost all of that networking is done in-person. As far as I know, I’ve never gotten a job or a useful contact out of LinkedIn because it’s just not really the way we work. Additionally, […]

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