Have you ever been to a networking event where someone you haven’t spoken to just threw a business card at you and walked away?
Some people swap business cards as if they’re Pokemon cards but it’s important to remember that in a networking session it’s not about the number of people you talk to, it’s about the quality of the conversations that you’re having and the connections that you’re making when you’re there. If you can have just a few meaningful conversations then you’re doing great!
Networking is a people puzzle, not a numbers game.
My 3 top tips!
Know who you are and what you want going in.
Do your research beforehand on the type of businesses that will be at the event and practice your elevator pitch.
In conversations focus on being interested rather than being interesting.
Pause and ask how can I help them, rather than how can they help me. This is how relationships are formed. You’re supposed to be farming, not hunting!
The most crucial part! If you’re not going to follow up afterwards and keep the connection going, what’s the point? Set aside some time in your diary for the following day and get connecting.
Have conversations, make connections; Don’t collect cards.