Tonight I attended the MPA: Building Connections workshop at McCombs. The workshop was led by Michelle Polkinghorn and she brushed us up on some crucial networking skills in preparation for the “Meet the Firms” recruiting kickoff this week at DKR Texas Memorial Stadium. For those of you who are not, or have not, recruited recently, “Meet the Firms” is an opportunity for students and firms to meet and connect with each other in a structured setting.
We were given a bunch of important tips but one particularly resonated with me. When I returned home, I turned on The Office while I worked on some audit homework, and I was reminded of this tip and now feel obliged to pass it on to you all.
Michelle suggested that after talking with a recruiter, and receiving their business card, you should write on the back a few key facts about the recruiter or memorable talking points. Of course, this should be done out of view of the recruiter. Suggested were writing things such as “UT alum” or “Talked about our love for cycling.” Anything that will help you to create an actual memorable relationship with the person.
Tell me which sounds better:
1. “Oh, hi…do you remember me? We, um, talked before…at the event last week…”
2. “Hello *recruiter’s name*, how are you doing? Did you ever get a chance to check out that bike trail we talked about last week at the brief and meet?”
I know I have a tendency to be extreme, but I hope you see my point.
Now back to The Office. This particular episode pits Dwight and Michael against each other competing for a big client. Although we can all agree that Michael can be a little bit radical and unreasonable in his business methods, he successfully employs this business card tip! In Michael’s case, he writes down facts about his clients’ families and likes/dislikes. Therefore, in a business setting, Michael delights his clients using the information he had written down.
Personal facts show his clients (and in our case, recruiters) that he cares about them and helps to maintain, as well as strengthen, their relationship.
My favorite clip from the episode reveals Michael’s thoughts on Dwight: