You’re no James Bond that moves around with class and style – a man who can charm people with a few words. That’s a guy who only exists in books and films. When it comes to networking, it does not matter whether you are an introvert or extrovert. Just be confident in yourself and it will reflect on the way you carry yourself and the way you speak. If you want to be good at networking, you’ve got to attend events and build the skills you need. The best way to grow yourself is to learn the skills on ground zero.
Throughout the event you need to constantly move. Do not expect people to come to the corner you are stuck at. Move about on your own and start talking to people. Jump into conversations, make yourself known. If you feel socially awkward, don’t worry, the event is filled with people who feel the same way, their just better at hiding it. Make acquaintances with random people who are moving around because they are just searching for someone to meet. If you’ve got friends, separate from them, you won’t meet new people if they are stuck to you.
No Speech Please
Don’t mug up a speech which you will recite to every new person you meet. Networking is not about rutting off a sales pitch on your brand. It is about meeting interesting people who will come in handy later on. If you’ve dealt with sales persons who randomly pop up at your home, you are already aware that part of mind switched off when they start reciting their sales pitch, so don’t do it.
Instead, have an interesting conversation and learn about the person and the business their running.
Stalk the Food Area
Everyone loves free food, but no one wants to advertise it, that’s why people generally go to the food counter alone. This is the place people break away from their groups to grab a bite or to quench a thirst. This is a perfect place to bump into people and start a conversation.
Pick Yourself Up
You have no idea what conversation you can land up in during a networking event and at times, you may fumble up. At those times, take a breath, close your eyes if you can, get back into it. You don’t have to know or be aware of everything. If a conversation is just flat or a failure, walk away, don’t waste your time and start another one with someone else.
Always remember to collect a card. During a networking event, you’ll meet many people, it will be impossible for your brain to recall each one. If you frequently attend networking events, then chances are you’re going to stumble upon a lot of familiar faces. Either have their card or have a good memory so you can recall their names because it will be pretty embarrassing if you can’t remember their names.
Remember networking at the end of the day is just about meeting people and getting to know them.