Event Recap | Networking with Danny Beyer

On July 11, CREW Iowa and Iowa Women in Architecture co-hosted networking specialist, Danny Beyer. Through an interactive talk, Beyer emphasized how networking helps people accomplish more, but that many people (including himself once) dislike and fear networking. He shared how the traditional fears people have and mistakes people make when trying to network can be easily avoided with a few simple reminders and tips:

  • What is networking?
    • Networking is building relationships, networks, and trust so you can support them and they can support you. As Beyer’s father told him, it is “talking to people, you idiot.”
  • Tip One: Don’t talk about work. Ask great questions. Have great conversations.
    • Approximately 2/3rds of people don’t like their work which creates a potentially bad start to any conversation. Instead, ask questions such as “What’s your story?” “What do you do for fun?” or “What are you passionate about?”
  • Tip Two: You have to be willing to tell people what you want.A lot of people suffer for being too nice or worry about being perceived as using other people.  You have to be able to ask people if they can help.
    • Remember, people want to help their friends.
  • Tip Three: End your interactions, coffee dates, and meetings (informal or formal) with the question: “How can I help you?”  AND follow through.
    • This cements your relationship and opens doors for the future.
  • Tricks for Remembering Names
    • Stop telling yourself you can’t remember names. It becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy as you then stop trying to remember.
    • The easiest way to remember a name is to have a great conversation. (See Tip Two!)
  • Tips for Women
    • Danny’s survey work addressed some of these concerns, but he doesn’t believe he is an authority on gender-specific advice. His tips and tricks are as gender neutral as possible. In general, he recommends: 1) Don’t be afraid to go to the table, 2) “Lean in,” and 3) Be confident.
  • Networking with Age Differences
    • Have great conversations helps bridge the age gap. Mentorship can go both ways.
Submitted by Laura Kessel