/ Asked by Jorge
What is the etiquette about asking people to networking lunches? I am trying to find a position at one of our clients and I want to meet folks there. Can I schedule lunch meetings with them as a pretext to network and suss out potential positions or would they feel manipulated?
Answered by Dawn, Hiring Expert at Daikin Applied, on Monday, October 28, 2013
I highly encourage you to be transparent and upfront with your intentions when you arrange work meetings.  You may find that your clients will indeed feel manipulated or caught off guard when they are not appropriately prepared to address your questions.

You many consider sharing both of your anticipated topics when requesting the meeting.  This way, you are giving your client the opportunity to accept and evaluate how they will respond to each request. 
Answered by Elizabeth, Hiring Expert at HCA Healthcare, on Monday, October 28, 2013
You are on the right track!  Think about this as information gathering, and then you do not have to feel too pushy or like you are being misleading.  Sounds like you genuinely interested in learning more about the client and the types of roles they anticipate.  Use this as an opportunity to ask them questions about their ideal candidate and how you your experience might be an asset to the organization.  This often leaves a great impression on your contact because you are being intentional and displaying yourself as a professional who knows what they want.  Networking is key!
Answered by Nikki, Hiring Expert at Fifth Third Bank, on Wednesday, October 30, 2013
This is a really great question and one of the reasons I struggled with networking in the beginning. Everyone is open to networking. You shouldn't sell yourself short, you may have an expertise that they need in the future. I would be up front in letting them know that it is networking. I would keep the conversation open and ask questions about them and how they came to be where they are, then dive in and let them know just a bit of your background and where you are headed. Networking is a great place to start in the job search. Everyone needs to create what I call "fans", the more "fans" you have the more opportunities you may have to find that perfect job. All you can do is ask, if they say no, then it is there loss. I see people who network as go getters, I’m not sure I have ever had a manager tell me they don’t want one of those. Good luck in your job search!
Answered by Nicole, Hiring Expert at ManpowerGroup, on Thursday, October 31, 2013
I would highly recommend networking to learn more about a company you are interested in working at. If you do not have contacts already try using LinkedIn to network. Let them know you are working on your career and have a high interest in learning about their career path and the company they work for and would they be willing to meet with you over coffee or lunch to discuss. Most professionals would be happy to sit down with you. You should be ready to pick up the bill though as that would be the proper etiquette for this type of situation. You’ll be pleasantly surprised at how many people will be open to helping you if you are upfront about your need and intentions.
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