How to Genuinely Network…and not lose all of your emotional freedom
Let me preface this article with this statement: Initially I hated the idea of networking, it seemed so shallow, fake and salesman like that it made me absolutely uncomfortable.
On the other end of the spectrum I tend to pour myself into my friendships and possibly over-invest.
Which leaves us with the conundrum:
How to network without being an annoying shallow, self-salesmen while not creating time-consuming or overcommitted friendships?
So here its is: Networking for the Genuine Individual Who Also Doesn’t Have Enough Time for 200 More True Friendships.
You DON’T have to be a salesman or their new bestie
There is a happy medium I like to call acquaintanceship : positive relationships with people you interact with in life but do not wish to found life long friendship backs with.
Acquaintanceships are beautiful things that allow you to forge positive relationships with truly wonderful conversation without creating obligation or deeply emotional ties (such as those shared with our best friends)
Aim for SURFACE LEVEL over shallow
Shallow relationships are self-serving and exude the stench of forced friendship but surface level can correlate back to acquaintanceships you have with classmates, cousins or even people in your yoga class!
Surface level interactions are the gateway to simple connection with people around us, sparking our acquaintanceships!
Be observant and actual LISTEN
Look for ANY similarity or interesting quality about your “target”
This does not need to be profound just find anything from a stylish briefcase, hobby, hometown, or adorable cat and use this REAL interest as your jumping off point!
Use those listening skills and hone in on a simple similarity and forge that acquaintanceship!
Live life knowing that EVERYONE you interact with could create a beneficial acquaintanceship!
If you notice something similar or interesting about a stranger you interact with SAY IT.
Obviously this only applies to pleasant and constructive comments!
You never know what Corporate Attorney, Government Official or [insert head of your dream internship here] gets coffee at the same place you do!
A simple hello or even a smile can start these casual conversations that could greatly impact your life
And what is the worst thing that could happen…
A stranger walks away from you with a compliment!
So get out there and Genuinely Network, make those acquaintanceships
EVERYWHERE and EVERYDAY!
Best wishes in all your acquaintanceship adventures, and may they bring you plentiful interview, internships and employment,