It's no secret—networking is not easy. Even if you're the biggest people-person out there, you can still miss out on valuable connections if you're not playing the game right.

So, to help everyone out, we've gathered some of the best ideas from around the web for getting more out of every networking situation you find yourself in.

  • If your networking just isn't working, start my making sure it's not because of one of these six basic mistakes. (Come Recommended)
  • Feel awkward every time you walk into a networking situation? Try these 15 ideas for making your networking not just natural, but graceful. (Fast Company)
  • If you've made connections but never use them, try these four smarter ways to work your contacts. (Inc.)
  • Check out these 10 secrets that will make your networking easier and—dare we say—maybe even fun. (Quick Sprout)
  • When you're meeting someone for the first time, make sure your handshake isn't holding you back in one of these four ways. (Fast Company)
  • Having trouble getting the conversation rolling? Try choosing from this menu of 10 options for making small talk. (Positively Positive)
  • And, of course, you should make sure to avoid these five awkward conversation mistakes. (Lifehacker)
  • Sealed the deal at the networking event? Use these ideas to follow up so you don't lose that valuable connection. (The Art of Manliness)
  • Want more? Check out some of our great articles on networking like a pro!

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    Photo of hands shaking courtesy of Shutterstock.