A colleague sent this video clip to me, it’s pretty funny, though you can see the punch line coming a mile away.
The kernel of truth in the silly scenario is that despite the fact “it’s not brain surgery” – or rocket science – people really do have problems connecting with others, especially in networking environments. You might be brilliant in your studies or your field (or perhaps just a little arrogant), but it really does take practice for some people to know how to talk about themselves in a way that is engaging or even accessible to acquaintances. Even more importantly, being able show an interest in others, and to ask good questions, will get you as far as any impressive accomplishment you have under your belt. Networking is a skill that you will need to find a job and to stay up in your profession. And, I will dare to say… networking can also be really helpful, fun and interesting.
There are many budding rocket scientists and brain surgeons (and nonprofit leaders, business consultants, teachers, event planners, and so on) at Penn. If you are one of them, but feel you need a little help getting comfortable with networking, try these Career Services resources for help:
More blog entries on the topic: https://ulife.vpul.upenn.edu/careerservices/blog/?cat=24
Networking tips on our website: http://www.vpul.upenn.edu/careerservices/undergrad/networking.html (includes helpful videos).
Attend a Networking workshop – we do them every semester (check our calendars for the right one for you).