Happy nearly February! January is a weird month, you can start off so optimistic but end up feeling blue with the dark cold days.
In order to get through the grind of this month, I decided I needed little breaks to look forward to so I booked a few trips. I’m excited to go to Toronto for the first time in a few weeks!
This week I wanted to talk about moving to New York and building a network from scratch. It can be hard to network and let me tell you NO ONE enjoys networking. The best advice I’ve learned is
– When you are networking you are essentially acting, you are playing a role so if you think about it that way it might be easier to approach people
– If you don’t know where to go when you walk into a room head for the drinks/ food table. It’s easier to strike up a conversation there
– Don’t just stick to the people you know. Try to talk to at least three different people and have meaningful conversations with them
– If you are stuck in a conversation going nowhere have an excuse ready so you can exit- such as you need a drink/ find the restroom.
– Don’t be on your phone, no one will come over to you if you are and it is much easier to make conversation with someone once you make eye contact with them
– Add people on LinkedIn the next day, but don’t just hit connect, write a personalised message about how good it was to speak to them
When you first move to New York as an Irish citizen the easiest way to meet people is through the Irish networks here
The Irish consulate in New York also hold networking breakfasts on the first Friday of every month. Check them out here
Networking here was never just about making business contacts for me but also making friends. One question that I was asked when I first moved here that really hit home was – whos your emergency contact?
And I honestly didn’t know. It would be useless having someone in Ireland, so I knew then it was important to make good friends.
Once you meet some people and get settled into the city, then I would advise moving outside the Irish networks after all you are here to experience the American culture!