Networking is an extremely important activity. It helps you build long-lasting connections that can come to your rescue in professional troubles. Infact, stats reveal that 85% of jobs are filled with networking. Here are some tips that would help you in networking with new people at an event:
Your networking efforts should begin a bit earlier than the event itself. Before you head out, you must be well-groomed if you want to make a bold impression. Wear an attire that fits the occasion, and keep the most important grooming tips in mind.
Not just that, you must also go through the course of the event. Learn about the different activities that will take place throughout the day, the speakers who’d be addressing, and most importantly, get an idea about the kind of people who’ll be in attendance. This will help you in preparing your approach to them and make it a bit easier for you to talk to them at the event.
Make good use of Nonverbal cues
The way you carry yourself is almost as important the way you engage in a conversation with someone you are meeting for the first time. The person you want to talk to would decide in their mind if they want to converse with your approach to start a conversation and how well you conduct yourself.
That is why you must get some basics right – have a polite smile on your face; walk with confidence, though you might be jittery on the inside and offer them a firm handshake while maintaining eye contact and smiling pleasantly. Positive and professional nonverbal cues will help you create a positive impression of yourself even before you start talking to them.
Prepare an introductory statement
You must greet everyone by introducing yourself that casts a long-lasting first impression. Begin by telling them your name and what you do for a living. Along with this, you must also tell them about one of your key characteristics that will help them remember post-event. However, you must keep in mind that you should not come off as a needy individual. Networking is all about subtlety. Keep your introduction precise and save the details about yourself for later in the conversation, when you have the chance to talk about them.
Practice and research
Now that you know how you should introduce yourself to someone, you must also keep in mind that your introductory remarks should be prepared before you go to the event. As we mentioned in the previous point, you should research about the type of people who will be in attendance.
Once you do this, it’ll help you in crafting introductory messages that will be appreciated by most people you try to have a conversation with. Before you head out, try to look into a mirror and introduce yourself in the same way you intend to do at the event. This will help you gain confidence when you approach someone at the event.
Build a Strong Connection
The whole point of networking is to build deep, meaningful connections. If you simply converse with someone without connecting with them, your networking attempts will be all in vain. The best way to create a connection with someone is to be confident as the conversation progresses after your introductory remarks.
You must give the other person an opportunity to tell you about themself and while they do so, you should listen with interest. If you see that the conversation isn’t that interesting, you should ask the person some questions about their job or life in general and listen sincerely as they give you the answer. Most of all, you must not try to force things and must maintain the natural course of the conversation. You can talk about several things that have occurred at the event to bond over them or find something that you both share a common interest for.
Keep your digital business cards handy
At the end of your conversation, you must offer them your business card so that they remember who you are. Instead of the traditional paper cards, make use of tech-enabled digital business cards. A digital business card will help you stand out from the crowd and make it easier for them to remember who you are. Plus, an attractive digital business card also proved to be great fodder for conversation.
Now that you are all-prepped to ace the networking event, what’s the wait worth for? Lock your passes and don’t let your fear takeover!