Top tips for nervous networkers
Here are some top networking tips on how to reduce the awkwardness associated with it, you could even learn to enjoy it!
1 – Know your message. Call it whatever you like – your elevator pitch, your 60 second intro – it’s what you respond when someone asks ‘what do you do’. Devising your own business introduction that is concise yet interesting and engaging is really a useful tactic. It may sound silly, but knowing in your head what you will respond with when you are asked, is one less thing to worry about, leaving you to concentrate on finding interesting people in the room to talk to.
2 – Don’t be obsessed by ‘working the room’. Many people say that the best networkers are those that can ‘work a room’. However, there is also something to be said for having fewer but more in depth conversations throughout the course of a networking event. The basis of good business is always on strong relationships, so starting the process early and getting to know someone cannot do any harm.
3 – It isn’t a competition. Going to a networking event isn’t about how many business cards you come back with or how many follow up one to one meetings you can arrange. In fact these days, people are actively encouraged NOT to sell at networking events! Networking is only really a forum for you to meet likeminded business people. Taking it to the next level should be done over time and with care; nobody goes to a networking session to buy so don’t try too hard to sell to them!
4 – Remember that networking is only talking to people! I remember saying this to myself in my early days of attending networking events and do you know what, it really helped! Despite it sometimes feeling a little bit awkward to go up and start a conversation, everybody is there for the same reason; to meet and talk to potential new contacts!
Learning to love networking is something that most people consider an impossibility, but believe me, it does happen! If you or your team need help in approaching networking, or any other aspect of business development, Defintion offer a range of coaching courses. Get in touch with us to discuss networking tips, and how to make them work for you.