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Ø   Wear your nametag on your right side; this way, when you shake hands with someone, your hand, your face and your nametag are all in line with each other.

Ø   If you are writing out your own nametag, make sure to use large, neat letters! Feel free to just put your first name, as anyone who wants to remember your last name or your organization will be able to find these on the business card that you hand them.

Ø   Make sure to bring plenty of business cards with you, and keep them handy. It often is easiest if you keep a small number (15-20) in an easily accessible pocket, but have a backup supply in a purse, coat pocket, laptop bag, etc.

Ø   Make sure to bring a pen with you to any networking activity! You can use it to write down the names and numbers of other people (especially if *they* run out of business cards), or to briefly note what you talked about with someone on the back of their card, while your memory is still fresh.

Ø   Networking events are more often more comfortable if you attend them with a purpose; for example “I’m looking for someone who can help my organization develop a Six Sigma quality program”. This allows you to easily decide how much time you want to spend talking with someone (rather than talking with them just because they are willing to talk to you). It also helps you broaden the conversation to acquaintances and connections that might not be immediately apparent (“Oh, Six Sigma! My brother-in-law has done a lot of work with that; let me give you his personal email address”).

Ø   When you meet someone, don’t assume that they can read your nametag, introduce yourself. Take this opportunity to talk about yourself for a moment; who you are, what you do, what you are looking for, etc.

Ø   Always offer to shake hands at a professional networking meeting. Handshakes are *not* a strength test; grab their hand, but be gentle. Focus on making “web-to-web” contact (the stretch of skin between the base of the thumb and the beginning of the first finger).












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