Networking Events Need YOU…
Yes they really do.
Do you remember attending your first few Networking events… were you a little nervous, didn’t quite know if this was the group for you, perhaps you were shy and didn’t really mingle much, you were put on the spot and lost your train of thought, thought that this type of thing wasn’t for you… you get the picture!
Perhaps you haven’t attended any yet… but you’re gearing up for it.
Well I’m here to say that Networking events and groups need you, and in turn you need them too, so heres 5 Networking Nuggets to get you thru your first or your next event…
Ready – Set – GO!
Be Prepared – do a little background research (nothing too deep – you’re not the police doing background checks or an investigator stalking the group). But you do want to do a little surface research by taking a few moments to check out their Website, and/Social sites, just to get a feel for what you’re walking into – to know what type of Networking group you’re about to attend.
Be Yourself – well that one’s a no brainer really… who else are you supposed to be? Seriously though, don’t put on a facade, people can see right through that, so you might as well share the real you (that’s who you’re best at being). Yes, you may stumble your words a bit when delivering your ‘elevator pitch’, but that’s ok – you’ll get better. You want people to remember you, so put your best foot forward and smile.
Be Interested & Not Just Interesting – it’s great to ask questions, and asking someone what they do is a great icebreaker, but… don’t do all the talking, and don’t ask a question just for the sake of making conversation. Actually take the time to Listen too, often you’ll be glad you did, and you’ll be surprised by what you learn. People (no mater how diverse) have more in common with each other than they realize. You may have a special talent or gift that someone needs to connect with, they just haven’t found you yet (or vice versa).
Bring Business Cards – this is a tricky one these days – especially when everyone is so connected online – but truth be told – Business cards are still an effective way of being remembered. If someone is truly interested in what you’re about, they’ll ask you for your card (or they’ll give you their’s to connect) – and if you don’t have one… how will they remember to get in touch with you after the event. Don’t just hand them out to everyone you meet, but do be prepared to for when the opportunity arises.
Believe That You Belong – this may be hard to believe, primarily if it’s your first time attending a specific Networking event… but – remember that you chose to attend the function (whatever your reasoning was) – which means you have an interest in the group and what they stand for or what they can offer! So therefore – you see, you belong there too. You have a right to be there just as much as anyone else who is in attendance.
So now you’ve got the basics to attending a Networking Event. What’s next…
Take a deep Breath – Put on your best Smile- Go have some Fun!
Ready – Set – GO!
Care to share any other Networking tips that have worked for you?
Leave a comment below.