I stopped listening about five seconds into our conversation because the first thing he did was hand me a card of his.
There was no context, just, /here’s a card. Now, let me tell you about what I do./
And I wanted to strangle him to death, to be honest.
This is why I avoid networking events and mixers.
It’s not because I vehemently hate cards (which, to be honest, I do), but because I find the people who generally attend these things to be totally deplorable.
(Not all of them, of course. Just enough that it repulses me.)
So, don’t hand me your fucking card.
I don’t care about your company and the consulting services you offer and how you can change my life and I don’t want to work with you.
I am curious about your sex-life.
Please, tell me about that.
Tell me about all of the weird shit your partner and you are into and how that makes you feel.
Your first job, where your boss made strange sexual advances on you and it seemed like the only clear path to promotion was by acquiescing those?
Now /that’s/ a story!
Or, tell me about that time you got kidnapped in South America and were nearly murdered by a drug cartel and how you were 99% sure you wouldn’t be making it back home to your family.
All of the legal troubles your company got into because you totally forgot that the name Coca Cola was trademarked and decided to launch a company under that brand?
Fascinating. Tell me more.
Don’t immediately open with how amazing and life-changing your company is because the honest answer is that I probably don’t give a shit.
That’s not to say that I don’t want to help you — if I like you, I probably will.
(And even if I don’t, I probably will, too. That’s my thing.)
I want your stories.
I want to see your soul.
I want to hear about all of the shitty things you went through to get to where you are, right now.
(And bonus, if you’re still right in the middle of that shit, that’s great, too.)
Just not your fucking card, please.