We have all heard that if you want to get ahead in your career, you need to network. Perhaps you already understand the importance of this; maybe this is how you were able to secure your job, get that client, secure a deal, or even switch careers. Despite people knowing the endless benefits of networking, most of them still dread the experience.

Maybe people don’t know what to say and how to say it when it comes to networking. Some might even argue that approaching a stranger is quite intimidating. We are not disputing this fact, but once you know how to approach other professionals, networking becomes a lot easier.

If you have found yourself struggling to network, don’t fret. We have compiled some great questions to ask other professionals. So the next time you go to a company party, be sure to ask some of these questions.


Why Are You Here?

This is a great conversation starter to engage someone that you do not know. Asking this question also shows that you are not selfish, but rather interested in their life as well. Always avoid talking about yourself too much. In addition, their response should give you an idea of what they work with and what is on their mind. From that information, you can figure out how you can add value to their team. Also, be ready in case they ask you the same question.

How Did You Get Into Your Company Or Industry?

Once you have some background information about the person you are talking to, now is the time to ask how they got involved in the industry. This will make you likable as you are interested in knowing about their lives. Furthermore, knowing how they entered the market might also give you some insight into what you need to do to be a part of the team. Also, being enthusiastic is one of the keys to creating a lasting impression, something which might come in handy would you want help from them in the future.

How Do You Feel About ‘X’ In Your Company?

Asking about a particular event or any recent news about their company is an excellent way of showing that you are knowledgeable about their company, which will create a lasting memory about you. Always remember that first impressions matter a lot. Of course, besides being a nice person, try and show the other person how knowledgeable you are about the market place.

How Would One Become Part Of Your Company Or Industry?

At the back of your mind, you very much know that the objective is to get a new job. However, openly telling someone you just met that you need a job is quite off-putting. There are so many ways you can approach the topic, but you have to be careful about how it is done. If you are lucky, they might ask if you are job seeking and leave you with their business cards for a follow-up. However, even if that does not happen, you might get valuable information that could help you in the future.

What Do You Wish You Knew Earlier In Your Career?

If you are talking to someone senior to you, this is a great question to ask as it allows them to impart their knowledge and expertise acquired over time to you. You will be surprised at how much wisdom people are willing to share in these conversations. This question also shows that you are interested in learning and growing in your career.


Bottom Line

Networking has enormous benefits that have been proved time and time again. Perhaps you know this or you have heard about it, but whatever the case, always grab the opportunity to the network once you get the chance to. And if you have been there and didn’t know what to say, we hope these questions will help you have a lasting conversation. We wish you the best of luck!