Education is the passport to the future,tomorrow belong to those who prepare for it today. -By: Malcolm X
Go Out There & Talk. That's all it Takes
Often in my experiences of interacting with students preparing for future employment, candidates appearing for language exams as well as working professionals, one thing I constantly reiterate is to be gregarious and go initiate that conversation - drop all hesitations, anxieties and pretences and just speak.
It’s often the thought of the unknown reaction which stops us in our heels. It’s not surprising that most, if not all, often get tongue tied in situations which would behoove a person to speak – Addressing a large gathering of people, delivering a presentation, asking for that raise, initiating a conversation with a person up the professional hierarchy or a complete stranger. That being said, it is rarely a case of practise what you preach, as I’ve often found that initiating a conversation with a complete stranger is still a skill that needs to be worked upon which I've been trying to diligently do so.
Since having begun consciously taking initiative to strike up conversations about our services with professionals I’ve come across at events, corporate gatherings and in some rare cases the local watering hole, rarely has it ever happened that I’ve received a lackadaisical or a deterring response to what I have to say, as long as what I have to say resonates with them. Rather, it has led to some memorable interactions and in many cases even meetings and sit-downs with enterprises and entrepreneurs.
One such experience which comes right up is participation in a general quiz at some watering hole and winning a number of vouchers. Having won quite a few and not intending to use them all, I suggest a prospective employee to go up to absolute strangers and offer them the same. His refusal only emboldens me to do the same and I happen to approach a kindly, slightly greyed (not in hair, in but experience) couple, who was also very participative in the said quiz. We start talking about a couple of questions asked, leading to talking about what we all do and them expressing genuine admiration of the work I do. Before long, numbers are exchanged and hints of catching up soon happen. Later that evening, I reach home elated to see a LinkedIn invite in my Inbox suggesting a sit-down. My elation is only furthered by knowing that he was the country head of one of the largest FMCG’s, not just in India, but across the world. I learn that the lady, too, had one of the most interesting profiles working in the field of human behaviour.
This has led to us sitting down, getting some valuable input and much desired mentoring to take Incept in the right direction, for which I couldn’t be thankful enough. This, only because I took the initiative to talk. This is just foremost of the many engaging connections and interactions that have been possible by taking that step of initiating a conversation. I have made it a constant endeavor to not be bogged down by fear of untoward reactions and go grab that opportunity to talk and truly practise what I preach.