Networking Master -People always say that it is important to communicate because in networking events they are the best places to meet future business partners, collaborate or even get a new job. But what if I am shy? Where do you find the right events? How do you start conversations? What do you do after you meet someone?
Communication can be the key to success – giving you access to a host of opportunities with jobs, investors, and even clients. Thanks to a host of advances in technology, the stadium has been leveled. A person can build connections and grow their network, as long as they invest sufficient time and resources in the right strategies.
How to become a Networking Master
Becoming a networking master can be nerve-wracking. Even the most experienced pros can feel pushed out of their comfort zone when faced with a room full of strangers and little time to find common ground. However, there are some powerful advantages in learning how to master the art of networking
There is no recipe for success in developing your network. It is very likely that you will want to give in due to all your failures throughout the process. But as long as you maintain the correct attitude and expectations, you will surely learn something (about yourself and others).
ALSO CHECK: JOB POSTINGS
How to become a Networking Master
· Practice your offer/pitch
It’s not called an icebreaker for nothing – getting into a large crowd of people already engaged in conversation is like jumping in cold water! Painfully uncomfortable, that is. Knowing exactly how to introduce yourself can take the stress out of this moment. What should you say? Introduce yourself with a smile, consider some beginnings of a neutral conversation, and be prepared to make a personal anecdote – not a promotion. Ultimately, the person or group will ask you what you do and you can talk about the work.
· Request an introduction
Chances are, you’ve been invited to the event you’re attending by someone there – organizer, ex-colleague, roommate. Find this person and ask them to introduce you to someone. Then ask this person for an introduction. See how easy this was? Remember, everyone is there for the same reason you are.
· Don’t be too fast to ask for favors
Influencers and VIPs face a lot of humble or demanding communication attempts every day and suspect new tactics and new emails almost all the time, and sometimes even after adding value to their lives, you won’t get a clear opportunity to ask them for it. Reply your favor. That is why you must have enough patience to wait until the time is right to ask for what you want. And when will this “good time” come? I do not know. You know them better than I do.
· Introduce people to each other
The best way to owe a favor to someone is to simply present it to someone who can benefit from it.
Assuming you know both people well, a simple email asking both of them if they want to get to know each other (noting what is in them) will make you someone who “knows everyone” and of course; Both will pay you later if all goes well.
· Bring your card
Hand out a business card to everyone you meet, and make sure it displays your contact information correctly. Don’t have a card yet? Invest in personal contact cards that show your name, email address, phone number, and perhaps a brief description of what you do. Get a pen as well, so that when someone gives you their business card, you can write something to better remember them, for example “We talked about House of Cards” or “Looks like Uncle Carl.”
Within two days of the communication event, follow up with everyone you’ve met by writing a short email referring to your conversation. Then stay in touch by contacting professional networks by inviting them to another event, or by sharing a resource – interesting article, website, book. Keeping lines of communication open after meeting someone means that you have succeeded – you have officially expanded your network.
· Meet people through other people
One of the simplest ways to expand your network is to ask for introductions. Your current friends, family, and colleagues are a great resource for you to create new connections and with the added bonus of already knowing you and your goals can place you directly with valuable people with similar likes, backgrounds, goals, or industries. Moreover, an introduction from one friend to other friends lends weight to a referral, we all know the saying “your friend, he’s a friend of mine”.
· Manage your time
Building true relationships and connections takes time, but it is also important to track time in communication events. Before you arrive, set a goal and plan for the number of people you want to spend time with. Aim for a meaningful number of connections rather than many vulnerable moments, five strong new relationships will outnumber 20 ineffective moments.
You often have limited time in networking events, so make the most of this valuable time with a strategic plan about your communications, the time you spend with each person, and the time you will spend talking to new people or building on modern communications. Don’t forget to plan an exit strategy with the goal of sticking to your goals
· Be direct and honest.
Along the same lines, a lot of people seem to think that to be a good networker you have to impress everyone else in the room. While you want to be memorable, lying to get there is not the best strategy. The liar is generally easy to spot.
And even if people don’t catch up with you at first, sooner or later, a clever person will reveal your lies to the rest of your network, permanently polluting your brand and reputation. It can be very devastating.
· Share the stage
Improving the quality of discussions can lead to more meaningful moments and connections. Two simple methods involve leaving space for the other person to respond as well as seeking their opinion. Once you have identified your thoughts on a topic, ask directly how they see the situation. Bonus points if you later restate the other person’s point of view and then ask an clarifying question – it shows that you were listening!
· Set the stage for a future conversation
Be sure to share actual contact and follow-up information – it is through this type of work that new relationships develop and old relationships can grow and flourish. Use these tips and you’ll find conversations anywhere become more comfortable and meaningful – all it takes is a little practice!
· Build relationships
Often times, the professionals make networking seem functional. However, the truth is that building your network is all about interacting with other humans. It is relationship based and not a sales product. You are not trying to sell anything to these people (especially the first time you meet them). Remember, you want these people to love you, not buy a car from you.
We hope you really found this article helpful. Let us know what you think at the comment box. Share to help someone get a job or make an informed decision about their career today.