Master the Art of Small Talk in 7 Easy Steps

master-art-small-talk-six-easy-steps-copyYou’ve been invited to have lunch with someone you hope will mentor you, but you don’t have a clue what to talk about.

At a networking session for your industry, you’re tongue tied about familiar topics.

You’ve joined a club to make new friends, but no members are approaching you at meetings.

Eighty per cent of all hires are secured through networking, through people knowing other people. So, it’s no wonder that career coaches and successful businesspeople preach the value of networking, mingling, making connections, and building relationships. But how?

The answer, surprisingly, is small talk.

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Soft Skills: How To Shake Hands

handshakeThe sweaty palm. The vise grip. The pump handle. The dead fish. These are the handshakes that don’t create a favorable impression.

Although I’ve never heard of a handshake so bad it blew a job offer off the table, the perfect handshake is something every jobseeker needs. It’s a social skill that telegraphs to a new acquaintance what a fine person you are – that you know how to make friends, behave yourself, and yet have some spunk.

So, before your next job interview, review my pointers for what makes the perfect handshake. In just a few minutes, you can boost your likability score.Read more

50 Ways to Be a Better Networker

hello-im-new-copyMore than a third of all people found their last job because of someone they knew.

If that’s not enough to push your networking efforts into high gear, I don’t know what will.

Networking isn’t a skill that comes naturally to everyone. Most people have to learn how. Making connections with other people can be especially difficult if you are shy, introverted, young, or lacking social skills.

Whatever your business experience or social comfort level, it’s not difficult to improve your networking skills. You don’t need a teacher or a seminar, just some new habits.

Here’s a list of 50 habits to master. Learn these and you’ll be on your way to building a the kind of network that advances your career.Read more