How to become a grown-up in 468 easy(ish) steps.

Step 275: Master business card etiquette

Like so much in life, the process of asking for someone’s business card seems so, so awkward if you’ve never done it, and totally unremarkable and simple if you have.

Here’s how it goes. You are chatting with someone, they are friendly and interesting, and it’s been wonderful but the conversation is winding down. Business, thankfully, has developed a smooth conversation-ender, which is asking for a card. This is not a weird thing to do. People expect it.

You: It’s been so fantastic chatting with you. Oh, hey, do you have a card on you?
Person: Why, yes! (fumbles, then hands you card)
You: Excellent. Here is mine! (give them your card)

See? That’s it. Here’s what has never, ever happened, except in the neurotic dark imaginings of young people.

You: It’s been so fantastic chatting with you. Oh, hey, do you have a card on you?
Person: (Spits out mouthful of water) WHAT? No. I mean, yes, of course I have cards, but would never ever in a million years consider giving it to someone like yourself. Ha! That … that’s a good joke. You were joking, right? (Adopts unexpected, deep scary voice; eyes flash red) YOU WILL NEVER GET A JOB!

It’s just not that big a deal. Master this small thing, that you may never imagine the preceding ever again. After you get their card, it’s great to send a short follow-up email. It doesn’t have to be long.

Dear So-and-So,

It was great to meet you at the conference last week! Really enjoyed talking about the Times' digital transition. I hope our paths cross again soon.

All best,

Note: If you don’t have a business card, which 96% of just-graduated and/or sans-job people do not, there’s nothing wrong with making them for yourself. This is great for the job search process, networking events, going to conferences, etc. It doesn’t have to be complicated — I have mini-Moo cards. Here’s a super simple format:

Firstname P. Lastname
General Title (organic chemist? Law student? Teacher?)
555 555 5555

19th Jan 2013 371 notes , Comments
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    Les reblogeamos unas recomendaciones prácticas sobre el uso de tarjetas de presentación:
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