The Mentorist


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How to Work a Room When You’d Rather Fall Through the Floor

My favorite New Yorker cartoon shows a worried, middle-aged man about to walk into a cocktail party.  The thought bubble above his head reads, ‘Yikes! Grown-ups!’

Exactly.

I loathe cocktail parties — and any other gathering that requires dealing with crowds of strangers from a standing position.  Nonetheless, these sorts of ‘mingle fests’ are a fact of professional life.

If hosted by your employer, showing up is tacitly understood to be mandatory.  (Company holiday party, anyone?)  Even if your paycheck has nothing to do with the event, you can often stand to benefit professionally by going:  Future clients, referrals, job offers and board invitations can all stem from what’s known as ‘working the crowd.’ Continue reading


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This Ain’t No Party, This Ain’t No Disco….

The appetizers? “To die for.” The setting? A posh museum gallery. The crowd? Female partners of a prominent law firm and the ‘C’-level women they want as clients.

The problem? The price tag of this marketing event includes five digits, and little to no marketing is going on.

I’m all for the soft sell — and for building relationships. That said, women don’t know how to market to other women. I’ve been to enough of these “women’s events” over the years to know that my latest experience is typical of what happens at these things –- regardless of the sponsoring firm.

Here are some ways to increase your ROI from women’s events hosted by your firm’s senior women:

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Once More, with Feeling: The Art of the Thank-You

There it was:  the de rigueur thank-you e-mail from a young lawyer who just had a networking meeting with me.

So good, so far.  If only his thank-you hadn’t arrived within five minutes of our saying good-bye to each other.

Promptness is – most times – a virtue.   But sending thank-you e-mails right on the heels of finishing a job interview or networking meeting can leave the impression that you’re simply going through the motions.  (I wondered, in fact, if my young colleague had written his thank-you message before he’d even met me.)

To get the most bang for your thank-you buck, do the following:

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