Have you picked someone’s brain yet?
Well, my last post was about the initial step for a newcomer to enhance his career management skills.
Considering that you are ready to pitch your unique value, now it’s time to assess if you are ready to pick someone’s brain already. Are you?
Much is said about Vancouver’s west coast lifestyle – people are friendlier, always willing to offer a helping hand – however when it’s time to talk business I have heard from innumerous newcomers that’s not really true. Well, is it or not?
Let’s face it. Would you be willing to share some of your valuable and highly productive working hours to chat with someone you never met? How about missing out on the sunshine to chat?
Not really, right? Definitely, not!
A very important attribute for any professional is to be able to pitch his ideas and interest others in valuable conversations. By doing that one will build and nurture a powerful professional social network. But how can you do it if you do not know anyone?
Here’s the trick and it’s easier than you think. It’s all about you!
It’s all about knowing thyself and conveying that by meeting you and anyone will be able to get a different perspective. In other words, you have to be able to “walk the walk and drive the talk”. One of the strategies I recommend is, just like when you are preparing your value proposition, to reflect and look within yourself:
What is it that interests you about meeting this person? Knowing about this industry? Do you know the players and what’s trending? Why would you be an asset for any organization within this industry? Remember that certain topics are off-limits, e.g. – salary, open opps, among others. These topics are only safe after a relationship has been built, nurtured, and solidified.
By reviewing these four questions, you’ll likely have more than enough topics and ideas to interest anyone for a good cup of coffee and will definitely be able to approach them wisely. Bear in mind that location is also important but often overlooked. Considering that, if you are inviting, chances are that you will have to choose the location, so choose one that is aligned with the person’s industry, position, and is easily accessible.
Downtown Vancouver is packed with great coffee shops and certainly you’ll find one that fits your network target list and reflects your personality as well. My personal suggestions are Thierry @ Alberni Street and Trees Organic in Gastown. Excellent places to kick start your strategy.
So, whose brain are you going to pick? Come on give it a try!