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What do you do?

November 20 @ 1:14 am

Imagine a scenario where you are meeting for someone for the first time. If you live in America, there is a good chance that the conversational exchange will go something like this:

An opening volley of small talk …

A bit more small talk …

Something about the weather …

And then someone will inevitably say … (wait for it …)

“So, what do you do?”

How do you answer the question, “What do you do?”

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An introverted man on the left and an extraverted man on the right

Where Do You Think? A Key Difference Between Introverts & Extroverts

November 20 @ 1:14 am

There are many contrasting and complimentary differences between introverts and extraverts: where we get our energy, what stimulates us, how we feel about small or big groups, to name but a few. The contrasts are rich and numerous. However, as a long-time Myers-Briggs practitioner, I find that the most defining characteristics of the introvert / extravert spectrum is where people think.

In general, extraverts tend to think externally; they need to verbalize their thoughts to think. Thoughts are actually formed as they are verbalized. They speak to think.

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Sonar rings radiating out in the upper right quadrant

A Quick Guide to Informational Interviews

November 20 @ 1:14 am

How do you decide what direction to head next in your career? Would you like to be more visible inside your company? How do you increase your chances of getting a job offer inside of a company that interests you?

Over the course of my speaking and client engagements I find myself frequently recommending informational interviews as a tactic to learn, as well as gain exposure for your career. Informational interviews are a great way to explore opportunities, discover mentors, and get information about a field of work from someone who has firsthand knowledge.

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Page-A-Day wall calendar with the words "Networking Event" circled in red

Networking at Events

November 20 @ 1:14 am

In the spring of 2017 I was invited to be a guest blogger on the AICPA website. The AICPA — the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants — was gearing up for its annual convention later that spring. I offered six great tips on networking, especially at large events. The ideas were as timely then as they are today. .

I used to be afraid of networking. As an avowed introvert with a moderate case of shyness, too often I would pass up opportunities to meet and connect with people. Much later in life I would discover that networking was an acquired skill and was well within my reach…

Read the entire article at the AICPA Insights Blog 

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Three Reasons You Should Keep Your LinkedIn Profile Up To Date

November 20 @ 1:14 am

While LinkedIn has become the database of record for our careers, it is so much more than that. It is the one place on the Internet where we make our professional declaration of who we are and what we do. As such, it is extremely useful in building and maintaining a rich network of professional relationships. A current and complete profile makes it easy for friends and network connections to remember where you’ve been and what you’re working on.

In Helpful: A Guide to Life, Careers, and the Art of Networking, I write about eight reasons to keep your profile up to date. Here are three of them.

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Maze with a shortcut through the middle. People are walking through the shortcut

Inside Networking and the Essential Elements of Success

November 20 @ 1:14 am

There is always an element of serendipity to success. You have to be in the right place at the right time when the right opportunity comes along. However, to be successful in the modern corporate world you need more than just luck. You have to get three things right:

  1. You have to do good work.
  2. You have to be doing the right work.
  3. You have to be visible.

Inside networking is critical in all three areas.

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Inside Networking: How and Why to Build a Network Inside Your Organization

November 20 @ 1:14 am

How visible are you at work? Chances are good that you’re making one of most common career mistakes there is — pouring a disproportionate about of effort into doing good work and not taking enough time to get to know other people.

This is like wearing a cloak of invisibility.

Networking inside your company is some of the most important work that you can do — and not just for yourself. Building a web of strong relationships up, down, and across your organization is invaluable for any projects and tasks that you could hope to accomplish, especially inside large organizations.

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Is it True? Do extraverts make better networkers?

November 20 @ 1:14 am

There’s a myth out there that extraverts make better networkers. (In fact, there’s a lot of myths out there about introverts and extraverts but lo, I digress.) The ‘extraverts-make-better-networkers’ myth takes on various forms, including one of my favorites: ‘to be a better networker, just be more extraverted.’

Networking skills and a preference for introversion or extraversion are independent concepts. One does not imply the other. Networking skills are social skills, and social skills are learned.

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So, you think you can dance? The choreography of networking.

November 20 @ 1:14 am

Think back to the last time you were at a wedding — or any event with a dance floor. There was no shortage of well-meaning people encouraging the wallflowers, “Come on … get out on the dance floor … it’ll be fun … you’ll have a good time.”

In our Western culture we just assume that everyone can dance. But when you look at the people on the dance floor you will see a wide spectrum of skill. There will be some who are excellent dancers, with a total command of their body and the room.

At the other end of the spectrum, there will be a few who can’t dance at all and are just flailing in loose approximation to the rhythm of the music. And then there will be people who think that they are good dancers but, in all honesty, are not.

And so it is with networking.

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Silos Are Out

November 20 @ 1:14 am

Silos are out. It takes a healthy, well-run, cohesive, resonant organization. It takes a lot of networking, cohesion and collaboration to run a successful organization today.

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