Networking over a Meal
For the table setting, “BMW” is a helpful acronym for bread, meal, water, from left to right.
Your bread plate will be on your left.
Your glass will be on your right.
When it comes to silverware, work from the outside in.
Using a fish knife:
A fish knife has a sharp point and a wide, flat spatula blade.
The point is used to make the initial cut into the fish.
The flat part of the blade is used to lift the meat off the bones. Then, transfer the meat to your fork, before eating it.
Pace yourself with your dining companions.
Once you are done eating, place your fork and spoon facing diagonally on your plate.
After the meal is over, fold and place your napkin on the left side of your plate.
Starting a Conversation
Stand when being introduced.
Arrive early to mingle as people arrive.
Prepare some questions to ask the firm representative before-hand, such as:
How would you describe the culture at X firm?
How does X firm responding to the challenge of [current event relating to their field of work]?
If you are speaking to a firm representative, remember to note down their name so that you can either follow-up with them or mention them by name in a future application.
If you’re feeling nervous, it can be helpful to introduce yourself to people who are alone, before working up to introducing yourself to a group.
Alternatively, if you smile and make eye contact, someone will likely open up the group circle so you can join them.
When eating or drinking at a networking event, leave your right hand free for hand-shakes.
Take small bites so that you can continue to hold the conversation.
After the Networking Event
“It was very nice to meet you. Thank you for sharing your insights on X.”
Ask for a business card.
Within two days
Be brief, on topic, specific
Things to mention:
When and where you met them
A brief line on who you are
A thank you for a specific piece of advice or insight they gave
Ask any further questions you have.