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The recipe for a great networking conversation

Our step-by-step video shows you how to have anyone you meet eating from the palm of your hand.

Networking is a lot like eating lima beans. Nobody really likes to do it, but you know it’s good for you, so you do it anyway.

But, as anyone who actually likes lima beans will tell you, when prepared the right way, they’re actually not that bad. But since we’re no Rachael Ray or Bobby Flay, we’ll share a different kind of recipe with you instead—the kind that can lead to a job.

Rather than just throwing something together last minute and hoping it doesn’t come out sounding like word vomit, you can watch our easy-to-follow recipe video below to help sweeten your networking skills and make your conversations easier to swallow.

INGREDIENTS

  • ¼ cup butter
  • Contact’s name (to sprinkle)
  • 2 oz. genuine connection
  • ½ cup personal stories
  • Relevant work history (to taste)
  • 2 oz. bourbon
  • 1 serving contact info
  1. To get started, warm up the conversation by buttering up your contact with a friendly opener. Examples: “I love your outfit!” “Did you catch the game last night?” “What do you think about [insert trending news topic]?”
  2. Pepper in the person’s name at least two times while stirring, er, conversing. Although used sparingly throughout, this is an important ingredient to make the conversation seem more meaningful.
  3. As the conversation heats up, you’ll need to inject a genuine connection. You might have to dig through your pantry for this particular ingredient. Mentioning a common link or shared interest will make the entrée, scratch that, experience more hearty and memorable.
  4. Mix in some personal stories that demonstrate your robust character and show you’re human. Example: “The craziest thing happened to me on my commute to work this morning. And here’s how I handled it…” Sauté until warm.
  5. Once the conversation has come to a steady boil, you’ll want to shake in some relevant work history to taste. Overkilling the conversation with too much talk about yourself can be like overdressing a salad, but you’ll definitely want to drizzle some of your past work experiences into the conversation to give them a better idea of what you’re looking for and where you are in your career.
  6. Not only can you can cook with alcohol; you can also use it (in moderation) to overcome your introverted tendencies. After all, a little liquid courage never hurt anyone. Deglaze with a little bourbon to add a dash of flavor to the conversation. Simmer for 10 minutes.
  7. Lastly, make sure you top the conversation off by exchanging contact information, so you can get back in touch later.
  8. But wait, you’re not done yet. Set your timer for two weeks and then check back in. And if you really liked the dish, you’ll want to throw some in the freezer, to take out and defrost every so often to maintain the connection.

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