Networking may not be your favorite thing to do, but it sure does prove great results when done right! Such opportunity to make new connections whether just on a personal or business level should be treated as privilege, not a chore.
If networking makes you feel uncomfortable, here are 6 attainable ways to make your next business event a success.
6 Teachable Networking Skills
- Don’t just hang out with the people you already know. Yes, making connections with strangers may be out of your comfort zone but nothing good will ever happen for your business if you stay in your own bubble. To ease into networking at the business event, find someone who’s standing alone and make them feel special by starting a conversation. Typically, high-traffic areas such the bar or food table are great for networking.
- You’re not there to do business. Networking is a social and business gathering but you’re not there to just sell your products or services. Make sure to establish a relationship first so you can hopefully gain long-term clients in the future.
- Focus on 2-3 quality interactions. Listen when you join a conversation, then show you were listening by asking follow up questions. Make it about them, because it shows you care about making a meaningful interaction.
- Give more than take. You’re not there to just collect the business cards, so make sure you get to know people and leave a good lasting impression about you and your business. Ask questions and how you can help the people you’re talking to rather than making it all about yourself.
- Make notes on business cards. If you’re having trouble remembering people, write down important facts or things they mentioned on the business card they gave you. It will help you remember next time you see each other or when having a phone follow up.
- Set up at least one quality follow up meeting. Do it within the first 48 hours of meeting before they completely forget about you.
Whether you follow our networking tips or not, make sure you don’t go to your next business event without a plan. Your goal should be to make meaningful interactions and earn an opportunity to meet again. Will the people you give your business cards to become your potential clients? You won’t know unless you try!
If you’re a business owner in Delaware or Philadelphia area who needs more business coaching and networking tips, join Joe White at the monthly Goldmine Network Lunch in Wilmington, DE. There is no charge to attend and plenty to learn!
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