Posted by:Ngina k.
Networking is a great way to build business relationships but it can be very intimidating, for most of us at least. It does not have to be so hard to network, just use these simple tips and tricks:
Show up early
When you show up early, chances are that there will be fewer people and the event won’t have started just yet. This is a nice time to network since people are still relaxed.
Bring a friend
If you are the shy awkward type, it would be a great idea to bring a friend along. Make sure this is someone who brings out the best in you and isn’t afraid to leave you alone.
Listen more, speak less
At least for the first few minutes after striking a conversation with someone, listen to what they have to say. Make the conversation about them by asking questions like why they came to the event, what line of work they are in, what they like about it etc. This will make an impression and also make it easier for you to talk about yourself and your work.
Set a way to follow up
You want to skip that awkward phase of wanting to contact someone but not have a reason to do it. Make sure that you have already arranged to follow up before the conversation ends. Dig up something that’s useful to them, and email it to them then maybe later if you get a response, offer to meet up for coffee. That is how you make lasting relationships.
Set yourself up for success
Think about the various places people go to network, from a bar, conference to post-meeting drinks. List them down and evaluate which places you are more comfortable and able to be at your best self. This way, you are already setting up yourself for success as you will be able to interact while at your best self.