It is annual holiday party time. That means that you get a chance to network. If you are in the middle of a career/job change, or looking for work, you might be tempted to just stay in. Don’t.

I know, and you know that the inevitable question, “What do you do?” will come up. When you were proud of your job it was easy to just say your position, but that just doesn’t feel right anymore.

Here are some new ways to introduce yourself instead of answering, “looking for a job.”

Play around with these, and see which feels the best. Try these out on close friends and then try it out at the next networking event or holiday party, heck, even in line at the coffee shop, if you are feeling bold.

1. I am currently learning all I can about (enter thing that interests you) so I can (enter thing you want to do).

Example: I am currently learning all I can about Winnipeg tourism, so I can get a job marketing our city.

Be prepared to talk about the research you have been doing, and some interesting facts. This allows you to talk about your interests and future, instead of what you used to do.

2. I help (say who you help) to (say what you help them to do).

Example: I help people to manage their finances.

You may get questions about how you help, so be prepared to talk about that. This is a fun one because you immediately show that you are interested in helping other people and it’s not all about you.

3. I am trying to figure out where to go from (name previous role).

Example: I am trying to figure out where to go next from being a master marshmallow maker.

This takes the pressure off of having to have your next step figured out and allows space for conversation.

Play around with the suggestions above and see which one feels good to you. Whatever you choose, make sure you are truly interested in the subject.

I enjoy meeting new people at events to get their take on life.  I met a young Barbershop owner a few nights ago, and it was fascinating to hear how he started his business and where he’ll take it.

Trust that if you are authentic, people will want to talk to you.