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257

My suggestion would be to 'grab a coffee' with them, but drink something you DO like, be it water or a soft drink. When someone says 'grab a coffee', it's not an explicit requirement to drink a latte/cappuccino/americano/espresso/etc... Business meeting. If he asks if I want coffee, can I decline? Should I accept anyway and just let the cup sit full? ...


172

"Grab a beer" and "Grab a coffee" are colloquialisms. They are not meant to be taken literally. They mean "Let's get together informally and chat." If you don't drink beer or coffee then drink soda, tea, water, or whatever you prefer, or nothing. The point is to get together in a more relaxed setting. If you're offered coffee or beer in a more formal ...


157

If you must decline, I would simply say, "I'm sorry, I don't know you well enough to introduce you." If you do know them and simply don't want to open up your network... I'm sorry, but I cant think of anyone in my network who would be able to help you. Of course, that is the truth, as once you told anyone of your misgivings, they wouldn't be able to ...


147

Sounds like a networking event - and given you were "invited" through the company e-mail it sounds as if you'd be attending as a representative of the company. Especially given the questions asked. Best course of action in that case is to discuss it with your manager to see if this is something the company sees as being potentially beneficial. If so the ...


143

These types of events are usually nothing more than a sales pitch by a vendor to get your company to buy its products or use its services. Before you unilaterally decide to register and attend you need to find out your company policy on gifts. Depending where you work, a free dinner can be considered a gift and you need to understand your company's policy ...


127

Tell them that you keep work relationships out of Facebook as a personal policy (and suggest they connect with you on LinkedIn instead, if you use that for your professional network).


124

First of all, you shouldn't have mentioned your friend. Now you should: Ask your friend if they are OK with you giving their name. If they disagree, just tell the company that you cannot disclose the name of your friend without that person consent. You may lose an opportunity, but it is better than losing a friend or working for a company that puts you in ...


97

I think you can just add them on LinkedIn without asking permission or talking about it face to face. Just build a network, you will never know when it will come in handy!


71

I have a simple rule for Facebook: We must have shared a meal together. If you like this coworker enough to go out to eat with them, you can add them (possibly in a Restricted list as Jake covers, if it was more of a one-time whole-department thing.) If you don't, you're not really friends. The odd thing about this is that the rule spares everyone's ...


60

it seems like they're trying to write as little as possible Yes, is is in fact good etiquette to be as concise as possible: you avoid ambiguities you respect other peoples' time by getting to the point and not making irrelevant side-remarks. Written communication is hard: when done well, you should be able to easily follow the structure of the message and ...


48

I was wondering if it would be appropriate for me to ask my co-workers if I could maintain a professional network with them It's perfectly appropriate to invite anyone who you think would add value to your network. Depending on how you worked with them during your internship, and how they feel about you, they may not all accept your invitation. Don't ...


45

Some shops are very aggressive with their proxy servers, using it to ban everything they deem "not work". If they spend enough time with it, they can reasonably effectively lock down their employees' computers. It's not perfect, but it can send a powerful message to employees: we are watching, and we don't want you to ever do anything on our computers that ...


45

I'd say it's unlikely to be suspicious. Even assuming you have both of them publicly visible (the people I know who have two accounts, will hide their private one to force business contacts to the other one) it seems pretty common for people to have two separate networks. If anyone asks why you have two, just saying "I don't want to bother professional ...


43

Many companies actually encourage employees to use their personal networks to recruit talent for the company. They might actually want to reward your friend for their initiative. But just in case, you should still ask your friend if he is OK with you disclosing his name. If he doesn't, just reply to the company with your CV and a note that the friend would ...


40

I have a bit more of a broad answer. Never go to any meeting without knowing what the purpose of the meeting is, and what each participant wants out of it. * * Exceptions exist for spouses and bosses It follows that you should never attend a meeting unless it aligns with your interest. If you are prepared to go for a vague chat about things, it signals ...


40

Networking only works amongst people who want to network. If the motivation is all from one person, then it isn't going to work. Software engineers tend not to be all that gregarious - these emails and lunch invites are probably not targeted enough at other engineers who might also interested in networking - so you get little or no response. You're ...


32

You asked a few related questions: I would like to attend the event (is it real?) Of course, none of us can literally tell you if it's real or not, but the scheme is somewhat common. Typically, these sort of "networking" sessions are set up with a hook (free food!) and are a thin veil for a marketing firm or vendor to try to get a captive audience so ...


31

How [do I] politely refuse to put someone in touch with my professional network? Giving a random stranger direct access to your personal or professional network should feel uncomfortable. The issue isn't just that your reputation may be on the line by implicitly supporting this stranger, whom you know nothing about; the issue is also that you've not ...


28

I have done this once or twice (the second time they had a position but they didn't know what they really wanted, so I shaped it). The key for me was to point out their need first and my skills second. If your approach sounds too much like "give me a job that you don't list" they'll probably punt, but if you can hook them with an insight about a need that ...


26

I have a blanket policy - I don't accept Facebook requests from anyone with whom I have a current business relationship through my employer. That can be vendors, co-workers, contractors, or anything else. If someone sends me a request, I tell them politely "I'm sorry, but it's my policy to not accept friend requests on Facebook for anyone I work with." This ...


26

This whole "Hey, we haven't talked in years, but let's go have lunch together" feels absurdly unnatural to me. I would also probably ignore it. On the other hand, I'd have no problem recommending old colleagues with whom I haven't talked in years but am well aware that they are good at their jobs. I have done that a few times. My point is, networking isn't ...


26

I don't think 'drink a coffee / grab a beer' situations really depend on you drinking said beverage. I even ask people to have coffee and I don't drink coffee. It's just a term for having a slightly more informal but work-related chat, and if you prefer tea, water, or a soda, that seems perfectly fine to me. The same goes for beer, just order what you feel ...


25

You could attempt to add them immediately after you left. That way, who ever wants to connect can do so - and whoever doesn't aren't socially pressured into doing so.


23

Almost definitely you should try to keep them separate. Unless you never post anything on your personal social-network accounts that you wouldn't want your professional contacts to see. For most people that is not the case. In fact there have been a number of high-profile stories about people being fired after a professional contact discovered "...


22

Ask questions that allows them to gauge your level of competence. This approach serves 6 purposes: For your other colleagues, it's a middle ground. By offering your own questions, you give them a means to quickly gauge your competence without having to face the proposition of saying "get lost, go do your job, I'll do mine." In other words, they can gauge ...


22

Shouldn't I do whatever it takes to gain their trust and friendship? That depends on the price you're willing to pay. Are you planning to gain these prizes with hard work and dedication? Then good luck - alas you won't need it. Or are you planning to take the easy route (i.e. ass kissing)? No one respects sycophants, so that's just a safe way to fail. But ...


22

I’ve been asked several times for my Facebook username and/or have been friend requested and I don’t want to sound rude by telling them that I don’t want to add them as friends. Easy. Just add them as friends to a “Restricted” list as explained here: When you add someone to your Restricted list, they'll only be able to see your Public content or ...


22

I also am a non-coffee, non-beer drinker. If offered a coffee, just say no thanks. Requesting water instead is usually a safe choice. "No, thanks--but do you have water, please?" If you feel the urge to offer someone something, why not be more open and offer any beverage. "Can I get you something to drink? Coffee, tea, water...?" Many other non-coffee ...


21

Simple - first time you are face-to-face, if he introduces himself as John, then that's permission for you to call him John. If you have to introduce yourself, say "Hello Dr Smith, I'm mrNiceGuy". If he then says, "please, call me John", all good - otherwise, call him Dr Smith.


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