Networking Tips For Tech Professionals

Networking Tips For Tech Professionals

Professionals networking
SkillHat launches motivated professionals into dream careers in Tech. In 2021, our students landed dream jobs as Business Analysts, Scrum Masters, Project Managers, and Product Owners. We focus on roles that do not require coding.

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  1. Your network determines your net worth. 
  3. I’ve had more great opportunities come to me from networking than when I had to cold apply. It’s much easier to land a job at the world’s most desirable companies through referrals.
  5. So many times I’ve received calls like “hey we met a few months ago at x conference, and I have an opportunity I think would be great for you”. People remembered me because I made an impression. Read more if you want to learn how. 
  7. Ps: The next big networking event to be at is BFUTR – the largest networking event for Black Tech professionals in North America.
  9. Networking can be nerve-wracking, especially for professionals who don’t have sufficient networking experience.
  11. Here are some tips that have helped me network effectively;

Before the Event

A woman wearing a blue dress preparing for an event
  1. 1. Dress sharp. Being well dressed boosts your confidence.  Looks matter – a lot. I aspire to be the best-dressed guy everywhere I go, and I can tell you people get drawn to me because of how well-dressed I am.
  3. 2. Look at the speaker/ attendee list to determine who you might want to connect with before you even arrive. It’ll give you a lay of the land.
  5. 3. Get familiar with how to pull up your LinkedIn QR code for people who want to connect.
  7. 4. Practice your intro /elevator pitch. Make it about your personal brand, not necessarily the company you work for. Here’s mine: “Hi I’m Mo. I’m an impact Entrepreneur launching the underrepresented to dream careers in tech. I’m a Director at SkillHat”.

At the Event

Professionals at a networking event
  1. 1. Wear a name tag or sticky so people see your name and title before they talk to you. People are more likely to remember your name when they can see it. 
  3. 2.Walk into the room with confidence. Lots of people check their phones when they walk into a room. Don’t look at your phone, don’t look down at the ground, and don’t slouch to try to be invisible lol :joy: (we can see you), it makes it look like you lack confidence. Walk in slowly, with your chest out and a smile. Look around the room, make eye contact with some people, decide where you would like to go and move straight there.
  5. 3. When you meet someone new, ask open ended questions. Don’t ask closed questions like “Are you enjoying the event”? Once the person answers with yes, or no it creates an awkward silence. Instead, ask questions that begin with what, why, or how. For example, I like to ask “what speech resonated most with you, and why?” or “what are you looking forward to at the event today?”
  7. 4. Give, Give, Give. Make sure to give to others before you ask. Don’t start off with “I’m looking for a new job”. Give your empathy, give your attention, give your advice. How?? Well, you need to ask questions about them such as “What’s your biggest goal and what challenges are you facing in achieving them?” or just ask “How can I help you?”. I know it could feel ridiculous offering to help someone you just met 30 seconds before, but trust me, try this and watch their face light up. You’ll automatically position yourself as a resource, not a leech.
  9. 5. Make your mission/goal clear – You may be looking for a new job, or looking to grow your Business. At this point, you’ve built some rapport so you want to mention exactly what you need.
  11. 6. Connect on social media – LinkedIn is the go-to, but if you felt a strong connection, go the extra mile to ask “what’s the best way to connect with you? They might say Twitter or Instagram. Connect there as well. Go where the people are.
  13. 7. If you have a Business card, hand it out, but the social media connection is so much more important because it allows you to continue to interact with new contacts consistently – which is what it’s about. Most people will eventually throw the Business card away.
  15. 8. Know when to end the conversation. Here are a few signs the person is ready to move on to the next – you see them looking at their shoes, their toes are facing a different direction, and they’re looking at their watch more than once a minute. At that point, thank them for the conversation and wish them a great time at the rest of the event. Or do # 9 below.
  17. 9. Leverage the new connection right there. Ask “who else do you think I should talk to?”
  19. 10. Remember to smile through it all.

Post Event

A man smiling at his tablet
  1. You’re probably exhausted from all the talking and connecting but this is where the magic really happens. Re-connect within 24 – 48 hours of the event and send a message to each new connection you made. Send a simple note like “Hi this is (Your name) It was nice to meet you at x event. Have a great day”.

  2. I’m really excited about networking in person with you at BFUTR. BPTN events are always so well organized and the quality of people is excellent. 
  4. The tickets are premium priced but the hosts asked me to hook up my network with 50% off tickets. 
  6. Click the link to Register: BFUTR
  7. Apply the code to get 50% Off –  BFUTR50
  9. Good luck!

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