By Diana Cordova, CWCC Business Development and Marketing Director
The first woman was professionally dressed wearing a skirt and jacket. She came to the office and asked for our Member Services Director by name. She told me what she currently did and what she was specifically looking for, handed me her resume, and mentioned that she was moving back to Denver and wanted to learn about opportunities we might be aware of. She was prepared and professional, and I found myself immediately reviewing the Rolodex in my mind of contacts that might be useful to her. I shared the resources I was familiar with and took her resume to pass along.
The second woman, although presentable, was very casually dressed wearing khakis and an oxford shirt. She explained she was moving here and said she was looking for a job and then looked at me as if now it was my responsibility to magically materialize the perfect opportunity for her. When I asked her what she was interested in she said, “Anything.” I then asked her about her experience and she mentioned sales and customer service. I still wasn’t exactly sure what she was looking for, so I continued to question her and then tried to offer information that might assist her.
The Chamber is a valuable member and community resource with great networking events, so I explained that we do have events she can attend even as a non-member to make connections. I advised her to refine her focus and provide any contacts she meets with specific information as to what she is looking for and what she brings to the table so they can better assist her. She didn’t have a card, so I wrote down her information should something come to mind later. As she exited, I was left with the feeling that she would struggle in her networking efforts if she made all her contacts work as hard as I did to help her.
Below are several tips to improve the networking/prospecting interaction if you find yourself looking for that next great opportunity:
These tips are true if you are networking to look for a job or prospecting for clients. Today’s market is competitive, so make sure you are prepared whenever and wherever you choose to network.