by Matt Alderton | January 09, 2018
Everyone knows that networking is the best way to advance your career. What they don't realize, however, is that the best way to make contacts is to make friends.

So argues Money magazine contributor Martha C. White. "There's no shortage of networking advice on how to introduce yourself to a sales prospect, strike up a conversation with an expert at a conference, or stay in touch with a potential job lead," she says. "But all of those tips leave you with one big, gaping hole in your interpersonal skills: How to create friendly, social relationships with the people you actually see at work every day."

To strengthen your connections with colleagues, and build your career in the process, start with "hello."

"If you're approaching someone you've seen on a regular basis but never spoken with, find an opportunity to introduce yourself," Amanda Augustine, a career advice expert at TopResume, tells White, who adds: "Strike up a conversation when you meet on the way to the parking lot or run into them in the break room. And don't be afraid to point out the obvious. Career experts say something as basic as, 'I don't think we were ever introduced,' or, 'I've seen you here a million times and I'm sorry -- I never caught your name,' is a perfectly fine conversation starter."

More Tips:

Questions, Comments, Suggestions?
Contact Successful Meetings Editor in Chief Vincent Alonzo with your "How To" ideas.