One of the most effective ways to get yourself out there in the world is to network! We must get away from the computer and put ourselves out there in front of people. It is an amazing way to meet new people and for others to get to know who we really are. And if you are in business, hopefully you will gain lots of new clients! But I have heard so many people say that the networking events they are attending are just not working for them. There is a frustration level out there by many about how much time it takes to get out there to network, the financial cost to be part of networking groups and events and then not receive any return on investment.
I hear you! With any sort of networking events, the people that are attending need to have the right intentions for being there. Networking needs to be about authentically connecting and developing relationships! When you do that, those that you meet are not just people with business cards. It’s going beyond the small talk. It’s about really wanting to get to know other people. It’s about getting the ‘like, trust and respect factor’ before doing business together and that’s just smart business! Check out these ways that I network that have effectively worked for me. Hopefully some of my tips will resonate with you and bring your networking to a whole new level of success!
8 ‘Smart’ Tips for Amazing Networking Success!
- Be Approachable – When attending functions, be approachable! What does that mean specifically? Don’t have your head buried in your cellphone texting and not being really present. Put the phone away, look friendly and make eye contact with people to capture their initial attention.
- Be a Great Listener – When meeting someone at a networking event, do you automatically break into your elevator speech of what you do? I positively challenge you to stop doing that. Focus in on that other person you are meeting. First be really interested in what the other person has to say. Let them know you care about what they have to say. For quality people, they will appreciate that and want to reciprocate.
- Don’t Get Lost In A Crowd of People – If you want to stand out at an event, don’t get lost in the crowd of people. If there is a large group of people, interact with them, but move out to an area where you can still be seen and able to have meaningful conversations.
- Limit the Amount of Time Talking With One Person – During a networking event, be respectful of everyone you are talking with, but also remember your goal is trying to make at least a few meaningful connections. Don’t let one person take up your entire evening. After having a meaningful conversation, politely move forward on connecting with a few other people.
- Talk About a Common Interest – When talking with someone that you meet at a business event, try to make the conversation a little personal. You want to be memorable. What do I mean by that? People tend to remember people by some sort of discussion that resonated with them. The conversation could be about sports, health or fitness or maybe about kids. It’s awesome to have something in that conversation that someone could easily remember.
- Write Down a Few Notes – You know how it is when you leave an event and you can’t remember important details of what someone said to you! Do what you can to jot a few notes down on the back of a person’s business card so you will keep details of that connection fresh on your mind.
- Do Effective Follow-up – After an event, do you sometimes not connect with a person that was a great contact? Do awesome follow-up. Send a really cool note and if it’s someone you truly want to get to know better, invite that person out for a cup of coffee or lunch. Again, networking is about authentically keeping that connection going.
- Keep Connected – When you meet really awesome people at an event, you may not need their services at the time and they may not need yours. However, that connection might be very important in the future. Keep connected. Send a note once in a while to see how they’re doing. Send an article that might interest them. Keep the connection going!
Just like many things in life, effective networking takes time. But the tips I have outlined above is for long term connections, not just trying to get a quick acquaintance.
What are some of the tips above that most resonate with you that you already do or are going to start doing during your next networking event? What are some other tips you have to effectively network? I’d love to hear from you!
Cynthia Bazin is absolutely passionate about YOUR success and happiness. If you are ready and committed to change your life and take charge of your life, contact Cynthia today to start a conversation! She wants to be your mentor! She will get you laser-focused on the important things in life! Cynthia@smartchic.me | https://smartchic.me
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