Are you afraid of attending a networking event? In order to increase visibility, one requires exposure. Exposure takes place through networking that can occur either in-person or online. Both are equally imperative to the quest but today we focus on the in-person networking.
Here Are Some Tips to Help You Navigate Through Networking Events:
- Dress the part. Look presentable, remember what they say about first impressions. Depending on the type of networking event always ensure that you look your best and comfortable. This will give off a confident general demeanor.
- Have a plan of action depending on the networking event you are attending. Do your homework. Prepare index cards ahead of time, look up on who is going to be at the event and find ways to appeal to them. Research on who you want to meet – titles, professions, industry and names. This information can easily be found on LinkedIn and Google.
- Approach people and introduce yourself. Mimic a duck at this point, calm on the surface but paddling underneath – do not sell but listen. Oftentimes a connection picks up from here.
- Always ask the right question/s. The golden rule of thumb – ask those you meet at the event questions that you would want to be asked. What made you get involved in your field? For how long have you been doing this? Who are you looking to meet today? What have stood out for you from the speaker?
- Follow-up. Do the networking during the event as opposed to after the event. Exchange business cards, keep them safe and have a follow-up strategy. Ask those you have networked with when it is suitable to reconnect and brainstorm.
Invest in networking. Attending networking events pays off eventually as long as ; you choose the right events, focus on the goal, be your authentic self, let people know who you are and what your business or organization is about and finally be a resource for those who you network with as they will remember you as an individual who can connect them to a solution.