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  • It's that time again. You need another internship to bolster your college applications.

  • Last year you worked at a local art museum, helping organize their collection and giving tours to visitors.

  • This year, it's going to be much more difficult. You want to work on an organic farm across the country in California.

  • That's your real passion. Unfortunately, your friends' list of contacts doesn't include organic farmers.

  • The same for your parents' group of friends. They want to help you, but they simply don't know of any internships in agriculture.

  • The school counselor, she just laughed. To make your farming dreams come true,

  • you're going to have to press beyond your strong ties, people like your family and closest friends,

  • and try tapping into your weaker ties. Weak ties are a broader network, your friends of friends of friends.

  • They're important because they have access to resources that your strong ties don't have.

  • This works in both directions, by the way - you have access to resources that they don't have.

  • Let's say most people speak to three close friends on a regular basis.

  • Each time you reach beyond the next degree of contacts, you have access to three more people,

  • like a tree that branches out three times per node, so you can look beyond your closest circles.

  • During the last family get-together, didn't you hear that your aunt's friend studied lighting with a nature photographer on the West Coast?

  • In fact, you recall this because you saw a recent image by said photographer on the front cover of The New York Times.

  • So, you email him and learn that the photographer's wife's cousin publishes a sustainability magazine,

  • which employs a staff writer who pitches on a local baseball team with an umpire who,

  • wait for it, is an organic farmer.

  • Bingo!

  • Get ready to trade in those cufflinks for some apple seeds, all because you reached out to your weak ties.

  • That's your key, remember? Every conversation is an opportunity.

  • Moreover, don't wait for opportunity, make it happen.

  • Take Kathryn Minshew for example.

  • She went from not knowing anyone at Yahoo to three warm introductions to major executives in 30 days.

  • Here are her suggestions for three steps to networking.

  • 1 - Always say yes to invitations, even if it's not clear what you'll get out of the meeting.

  • Many of Kathryn's most productive relationships resulted from a meeting or call without a clear agenda.

  • 2 - When you want something, broadcast it to everyone you meet.

  • That doesn't mean you beg everyone for help as soon as you meet them, but talk about what you're trying to do.

  • Be excited, ask for feedback, and try to get them excited too.

  • 3 - Show up and often. Be at the forefront of other's minds when opportunities arise.

  • You don't want to be that person who only shows up when he needs something.

  • Be the one that people think of and want to reach out to when a new opportunity presents itself.

  • So while networking may not be the most intuitive, or even for some of you introverts, the most comfortable skill,

  • it's a helpful tool to have as you think about getting a job, going to school, or most importantly, learning from others.

  • Good luck!

It's that time again. You need another internship to bolster your college applications.

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A2 TED-Ed networking photographer kathryn organic access

【TED-Ed】Networking for the networking averse - Lisa Green Chau

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    VoiceTube posted on 2013/07/06
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