How to Network (Without being insufferable)

I am a lean, mean networking machine.

So often, networking conjures up images of a sleazy man in an ill fitting suit who is desperately trying to sell you something under the guise of taking your business card.

Eww.

What networking really is:
Making new friends with the strong chance of helping them.
Isn't that lovely?

So, how do you do it?

1. Be friendly. Ask how they came to be at the party or networking event, if they know anyone there and give genuine compliments where you can.
2. Ask how they got into their profession. Not 'what' they do, but 'how' it happened. This is a much more open ended question, which results in interesting answer.
3. Exchange business cards where appropriate.
4. Do not lose the cards.
5. Enjoy yourself.

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