What do I Say to Pros?

24 Apr

An essential part of networking is face-to-face conversation.

When one, being a student or recent graduate,  is surrounded by public relations professionals, it can be a bit intimidating to simply go up to them and introduce oneself. Of, course it is always frightening when a situation is awkward. The professional shouldn’t look at the student introducing themself with a facial expression that reads “Who are you and why should I care?” 

Lisa B. Marshall, a communications specialist, offers several tips in order to make interpersonal communications successful and, of course, avoiding all awkwardness. Potential friendships are all around, take advantage of it!

  • Pay attention
  • Be sincerely curious yet don’t interrogate
  • Most people are more than happy to converse as long as you take the first step.
  • Refrain from prejudice because you never know what people have to offer
  • If going to an event where a specific speaker will be present, Google them in advance. Do your homework!
  • Practice communications skill every chance that you get: Starbucks, Dunkin Donuts, the check-out  line at Wal-Mart, or even the line to get your favorite strawberry milkshake at Chick-Fil-A!

For the full podcast on How to Start a Conversation or other podcasts, visit Lisa B. Marshalls’s The Public Speaker.

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6 Responses to “What do I Say to Pros?”

  1. jemolitor April 26, 2010 at 11:14 PM #

    I think this is a great post. I think we do get tongue tied and nervous when it comes to those who are in the profession. The best way and easiest way to get better at anything is, what you said, to practice. As long as we become familiar with our surroundings and the people around us, we don’t need to worry about it. All of the suggestions offered are really helpful for not only a job someday, but even right now in college because we are always conversing with professors or other students. We need to get comfortable with our interpersonal communication skills. I think we learn more from doing at times than just watching and reading how to become good at skills. We just have to keep working at it until we become comfortable, because as they say…”practice makes perfect.”

  2. djhughes10 April 29, 2010 at 10:49 PM #

    This post is very helpful because there are times when trying to make that connection with other vendors, companies, clients, etc., it can be quite nerve wrecking. Trying to figure out what to say, how to say it, and how long to talk is difficult especially for new comers on the scene trying to make those connection. My mentor is great at meeting someone new and talking to them as if they are best friends, but he always gets connected that way too. Being comfortable and bold to meet new people at any moment is great skill to have, especially for communication majors in college.

  3. necottom April 30, 2010 at 5:10 PM #

    I completely understand about being shy or nervous when it comes to talking with public relations professionals, or any person of importance for that matter. I was really nervous when I had to interview Nate Anderson, the founder and president of Ear Candy Charity, my client for this semester. If you are a public relations major though, you need to get over this fear, because your job is all about making connections, talking with new people, and ultimately finding out information you can use to create a story. And who knows, you might end up finding someone you can work really well with, and you may even end up making a great friend!

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