Today’s blog is from Lionel Galvez, a Marketing student in GEB 3005 who has a story to share about networking:
As a student of The University of Central Florida, I was required to read a book called “The Recruiting Snitch, Recruiting Secrets To Help Land Your Dream Job” for the course, Career Research and Planning. I’m very happy reading this book was a requirement because it has honestly changed my life. I’m now motivated and I feel I have the tools needed to land a great career once I graduate.
When I finished reading the book, I e-mailed my instructor and told him how the information had helped me. He forwarded the e-mail to the author, Alysse Metzler. Days later, Alysse sent me an e-mail that she was glad her book helped me so I asked if there was anything I could do in return. Three weeks later she contacted me. She was going to present a lecture about the importance of networking and wanted to offer me the opportunity to create her PowerPoint presentation for her lecture. I created her PowerPoint and she was so happy with the outcome that she asked if I was okay with her telling the story of how we met in front the 400 students in my class. In retrospect, I’m glad I did this for her because not only did I learn the importance of networking, I had a specific story to tell about how it helped me. I secured a connection, was able to take my networking skills to the next level, and be the example to other students.
One of the things I’ve learned is that businesses operate to satisfy needs and to do that successful business people work to mutually satisfy each other’s needs. After I built a strong relationship with Alysse, I noticed that she needed help with the promotion of her book on her Facebook fan page. I invited her to meet up for coffee, and based on my experience and knowledge, offered to help promote and advertise her published book through social media, networking events, and from my own connections. Actions that would increase book purchases. In return for my help, Alysse been very supportive and motivating. She gives me constant feedback. Also, she’s being helping me prepare for the things I need to do to join The UCF Business Professional Selling Program, one of my main goals this year. Alysse has critiqued my resume several times, done mock interviews with me, and given me plenty of advice to become a successful professional. I now feel even more confident about myself and will keep working to expand my network.
My best advice to all; I encourage and challenge each of you to get involved in the networking opportunities UCF provides to you as a student. Whether it is attending a Career & Internship Expo Fair, or introducing yourself to someone successful who speaks to your class, you need to get out of your comfort zone and start talking to people. They know you are not a professional yet but that doesn’t mean you won’t be one day. Remember, every professional you meet is willing to help you out, so take advantage of their help! Just as Lonny Butcher says, always finish your conversation with “Thanks for your time. What can I do for you?” You may find out, as I did when I spoke to Alysse the first time, that they need help with something, maybe a skill you have that they don’t have. Then you’ll see that networking isn’t just about meeting someone, it’s about turning that meeting into an opportunity for both of you!
Marketing Major at the University of Central Florida