Top 10 Tips for Business Networking
Networking gives you the chance to present yourself in public without having to sell. If you have the right tools, skills, and knowledge to succeed, it doesn’t have to be daunting.
Follow these 10 simple networking tips to make connections and improve your professional outlook.
1. Keep your contacts current
It is important to keep your contacts updated and remind them of you. Keep in touch with your network to remind them how valuable and useful you are.
It is a grave error for any businessperson, no matter if they are a director of a company or an entry-level employee, to not have their business cards. You never know who you might meet and how they could help you. Always keep a few business cards on you.
Consider printing a few copies of your corporate cards if you don’t already have them. Personally printed cards are better than none at all.
You should also ensure that your cards are easily accessible. You don’t look professional if you have to dig through your wallet for your card or, worse, flip through cards from other people before you find yours.
3. Choose your events carefully
Before you go to any event, make sure you are sure it is the right place for you. It is important to target your networking if you are trying to find a specific sector.
4. The complete list is available here
Your bible is the delegate list. Request the delegate list before you arrive. You can request the delegate list if it is not available. Then, you can start to research who you would like to speak to. It is important to be strategic when networking.
5. It’s easy to be entertaining
Remember that most people will be in the same place as you when you enter a room and will be open to having a conversation. Be confident in conservation and ask questions: People like to hear from you and that makes you more interesting. People will be attracted to you because of your genuine interest in the topic and your enthusiasm.
6. Attention and retention
It is important to listen to what your contacts have to say and then use that information to improve your network experience. You will be remembered for being a valuable and memorable contact by introducing your new contacts to others with real details. Do not be embarrassed if you forget the name of your new contact while introducing them to another person.
7. Give don’t take
Networking is about sharing mutual benefits. Don’t try to sell others; instead, think about how you can help other people. That is why networking is so important. You will find people more open to receiving you.
While you are trying to reach as many people as possible, make sure that your business card is widely distributed. However, new contacts might be interested in delegates from other countries so don’t monopolize people’s time.
9. Follow up
It is just as important to follow up with a contact after making them a connection. At the very minimum, follow-up with an email. Consider dropping a phone call or handwritten note to these contacts in order to make them lifelong friends. Spam can cause emails to get lost in your inbox.
10. Social networking v traditional?
You shouldn’t fight between social and traditional networking. Your online presence can be used to strengthen and support your network position. LinkedIn activity can be extremely beneficial for research and maintaining contact with old and new contacts.