I remember my very first networking event. I was in my late twenties (yes – only a few short years ago…). It was the first function I was allowed to attend in my first corporate role as an IT trainer. After I registered I had absolutely NO IDEA what to do next!
I remember standing in a room full of people who looked 20 years older than me. They all (at least in my eyes) exuded confidence and I felt so sick with nerves that I nearly threw up.
Despite having been an ex-high school teacher and an IT trainer in the corporate world I had never been an attendee at a function specifically designed to network. Of course it was my first networking disaster.
Would you believe it if I told you I still LOATHE networking?
Yes, Deena Janes, marketing specialist, presenter extraordinaire (wow do I have tickets on myself?), DOES NOT like networking!
So I completely understand when I hear and see brokers (and most business owners for that matter) in the networking space and observe (some or most of them) doing it all wrong. I’ve been there!
As with all skills we need to LEARN how to network. I had to LEARN how to network and I’m still learning. Where most people fear public speaking more than death, I put networking right up there.
But just because I loathe it, do I choose NOT to do it? I think you all know the answer to that. You don’t build a successful business of 13 years from NOT networking.
So here are my 4 biggest tips for you today. THEN I’d like you to join me at our webinar at the end of the month for an hour of my best tips and strategies to help build your confidence and enjoy success at any networking function you attend.
Tip # 1
Don’t sit with or mingle with people you already know really well.
Of course say “Hi – I’ll catch you later” but you won’t get to meet new people if you’re chatting to ‘old ones’. I’ll teach you how to introduce yourself to new people in the webinar.
Tip # 2
It’s not about how many business cards you hand out.
It’s about how many quality conversations you have and how many business cards you collect. One or 2 great introductions will outweigh handing out 50 business cards.
Tip # 3
Add value to your New Networking Bestie (NNB).
Instead of telling everyone how great you are, find out how you can add value to them and/or their business. And it doesn’t have to involve finance or your business! Get them talking by YOU asking them questions and being genuinely interested in them. As I’ve always said – the more the other person talks, the more they like you!
Tip # 4
Stay in touch after you meet.
If you think you can add value to your NNB then catch up for a chat and follow your ‘networking follow up system’ (yes – and we all have one of those don’t we?). As an absolute minimum make sure you connect with them on LinkedIn and add them to your communication system.
If you want more great networking goodies, please join us online at the end of the month.
I’m looking forward to your seeing me :).
Because, after all Your Networking Skills Matter
THIS MONTHS WEBINAR
Let’s face it, most people hate networking.
This month’s webinar will step you through the challenges of finding a good network, then how to extract the most from your networking activities. All you need are your networking ‘rules’ and your system for success (and perhaps a little bit of jumping out of your comfort zone).
Join YCM to learn some tips and strategies to turn networking into your biggest lead generation tool with some new skills, strategies and tools to make networking successful – but more importantly, enjoyable.
Limited places so register now.
Wednesday 24 February 2pm AEDT