Most people attend networking events to gain something : job leads, referrals, exposure, connections, opportunities to grow their clientele. Having organized more than 50 network events over the past 10 years, I ’ ve seen enough of these people leave disappointed, dismissing network as a complete pine away of prison term .
But I ’ ve besides seen the opposite. I ‘ve seen people walk out with a handful of commercial enterprise cards feeling happy, prompt and stimulate. The major difference between these two groups of people is this : the people who leave on a senior high school note are those who attend with barely one goal in mind — to figure out how they can help others in the room.
true network occurs when there ’ s an sympathy that everyone in the room has adequate measure. In its purest form, it ’ randomness about people enjoying other people, communicating passions and connecting with others who share those passions. It ’ randomness about listening, figuring out what others need and connecting them with people you think can help, without any designs for personal gain. The most successful networkers build genuine relationships and give more than they receive. They go beyond think, “ What ’ randomness in it for me ? ” to ask “ How can I help ? ”
To follow their approach, here are eight ways to network successfully and have fun doing it .
Start networking before you need it.
season networkers can smell the malodor of desperation from across the room. People can sense when person is alone extinct to help himself. Tip-offs ranging from a panicky attend in the eyes to a portfolio brimming with resumes will send them running in the other guidance. On the other hand, by networking when you have no later motive, you can begin to build relationships and a reputation for being generous rather than self-serving .
Have a plan.
Since every person has prize, it ’ mho substantive that you know what yours is. Before you attend any network consequence, get clear on what talents, strengths, skill sets and connections you can bring to the table. Map out what you want to talk about, particularly how you may be able to help other people, either nowadays or in the future .
Forget your personal agenda.
While you may be tempted to network good to land a occupation or talk to people you normally wouldn ’ t have entree to, that’s a mistake. rather, make it your finish to be outdoors, friendly and honest, and to forge connections between people who may be able to help each other. Generosity is an attractive timbre and it ’ s something particular that people will remember about you.
Never dismiss anyone as unimportant.
Make it your mission to discover the value in each person you talk to. Ask questions and listen with pastime. Don ’ t make the mistake of discounting people due to their titles. person you meet may “ merely ” be a salesclerk, but they may have valuable connections or cognition you ’ vitamin d never learn about if you ’ d dismissed them .
then, when the conversation ends, remember what that person has to offer as you move to the next .
Connect the dots.
once you begin to listen to people and learn what they can bring to the table, you ’ ll startle realizing how one person in the room may be able to help another. Make it a point to connect people you feel have something of genuine rate to each other. When you go out of your means to make those potentially bright connections, you ’ re doing your part to make the network event a success .
Figure out how you can be useful.
Before any conversation comes to a close up, be certain to ask, “ How can I help you ? ” Because it ’ sulfur done sol rarely, you may encounter a surprised look, but it will most likely be accompanied by an appreciative smile. While the person may not have an answer for you that night, they may have an estimate late. Always close by saying something like, “ If you need anything, please reach out to me or connect via LinkedIn ” and stage your occupation card .
Follow up and follow through.
If you told person you ’ d get in touch with them, do it and reaffirm your captive to assist in any means you can. If you promised to introduce person to a person you know, take the time to do it. Everyone is interfering these days with jobs, families, events, commitments — evening thus, it takes no more than a moment to shoot off an electronic mail to introduce two people you want to connect. They can take it from there and do the exercise — just enjoy being the bridge. little things like that mean a lot to people and equitable one introduction can end up changing person ’ s life for the better. I ’ ve seen it happen dozens of times and it ’ s quite gratifying .
Believe in the power of networking.
When you believe that the true value of networking lies in helping others and you do your region, you ’ ll soon discover magic trick happening all around you. The beauty of this approach is that you never know when that magic trick may cast its spell on you .
Andrew Vest, Chief Problem Solver, entrepreneur and founder, loves to build products that people actually get palpable value out of using ( @ Redapt @ YEC @ preferling @ brandbuddee ) .