June is a month of merry moments and milestones:
Grads, Dads, Brides and Grooms all have their days. There will be celebrations; parties of many stripes as well as ceremonies and commemorations. We face a flurry of activity and many “rooms to work” if we accept the invitations:
Fathers Day brunches and barbecues as well as the Pinnacle of anxiety- producing events: Weddings! You don’t even have to be the bride or groom or their parents to feel just a twinge; you can be a guest and feel it’s daunting.
While the June Swoon is a baseball reference, it applies to more than the Fields of Dreams. The June Swoon is also the swirl of socializing that takes place.
That swirl can be daunting whether you’re walking into a meeting, a wedding, a graduation party or a company barbecue. And it doesn’t have to be.
Preparation is the Key;
When the invitation arrives, RSVP and say YES.
Read the invite for important details:
Record the information on your calendar
Set an alarm reminder
Brush up on current events/news/sports/issues
If unsure of the etiquette for the event, research. Information is at your fingertips…literally.
Plan your self-introduction linked to the event. That gives others context for your presence.
Pay Attention to The Conversation Cues
People who are face to face at any event want to be comfortable, feel welcomed and thought of as interesting. There is no magic: just set a goal to make others feel comfortable with you.
Listen to people and give them what my teachers called “undivided attention”. That means no glancing at gadgets and gizmos of technology. And for those retro social situations: NO glancing over peoples’ shoulders to see who more important or “worthy” is in the room. That is unacceptable.
Start with small talk: the event, venue, host, traffic, weather, kids, sports, parking…you get my drift. Instead of planning what to say next, focus on what others are saying and build on those points of interest. You’ll be in a conversation in a flash!
Dr. Nikki’s Med School Graduation Party
Standards of Grace
A few key phrases that start the ball rolling:
It’s so good to see you again.
Thank you so much for celebrating with (us/me).
You look wonderful! That tie is an eye-catcher.
Have you met my colleague/best man/cousin/boss? (And make energetic introductions)
Isn’t this a great place?
Did you try the mini sliders?
Have you found a position? What career direction are you headed? (If you have a job lead, this is the perfect time to offer it).
This is the time to be approachable.
That’s easy to do. Just smile!
Always thank the hosts before leaving!
Follow it up with a note.
Any suggestions for managing the swirl of socializing? Send them to me. _SR