21 Most Important things to do Networking.

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Networking is all about creating and building relationships. It is NOT about selling! Research says the average contact points to make a sale is 17. The probability of you making a sale the first time you meet someone is very low, though it can and has been done. So, stop thinking about selling and start thinking about how you can help the new people you meet. Start creating and building relationships.

Some people love to network and others fear it or hate it. Which are you? Do you like networking, meeting new people, starting conversations with strangers? Are you an introvert or an extrovert? How does that effect your networking?

We think of introverts as being shy and extroverts as being out going. It’s not that simple. Introverts may or may not be shy. Introverts do lose energy when around lots of people. They need to be alone to recharge after being with other large groups of people. Extroverts gain energy when around lots of people. They feel their energy zapped when they spend too much time alone. Brain scans done on introverts and extroverts found that introverts process stimulation (other people, talking, engaging) differently then extroverts. Introverts stimulate through a long, complicated pathway through areas of the brain in the remembering, planning and solving problems parts of the brain. Extroverts have a very quick and short response to stimulation through the brain pathway areas of sensory connection of visual, auditory, touch, smell, taste.

Carl Jung, a great psychoanalyst first coin the terms introvert and extrovert. He said that no one is all, 100% introverted or extroverted. In fact, we are all mostly ambiverts who have both introverted and extroverted qualities. Whether you are mostly an introvert or mostly an extrovert, you can be successful at networking.

Networking is both an Art and a Science. Here’s how to create rich, meaningful and extraordinary relationships while networking.

  1. Say Hello and SMILE-Smiling is engaging. People are attracted to smiles. We have automatic facial feedback and we will smile back when someone smiles at us. Smiling has been found to make you healthier, have less stress and makes you look better, more attractive. Lighter Yoga is very popular because we want to smile, laugh. The average person smiles 20X a day. The average child smiles 400X a day. Research has shown that people who smile more, live longer and are more successful.
  2. When people ask you “How are you” or “How do you do,” say “I’m fantastic!” Or, say “I’m fabulous,” “I’m amazing,” “I’m awesome,” “I’m incredible.” Usually the answer to “How are you?” is “OK,” “Good,” or “Fine.” Answer in an uplifting, happy and enthusiastic way and people will wonder why. It’s a conversation starter.
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  3. Remember to listen! Hearing is only listening to what is being said. Listening is also hearing what is not being said. Ask people questions and listen. Thinking about what you’re going to say next is not listening. Be fully present. Use phrases like “Tell me more…” or “Tell me about your business…life…hobbies…what you do for fun…” Be a good listener. Speak to the person’s listening.
  4. Take your time in networking. It’s not a race to meet as many people as you can. One really great, high quality conversation is worth way more than 20 superficial conversations.
  5. Tell personal stories, not just what do you do. Personal stories are more interesting and people will remember you more. Our brains are geared more to remembering stories not facts.
  6. Ask about their families, loves, fun things they do, the most challenging thing they’ve ever done. Ask about the best thing that ever happened to them. Their best vacation. Invite them to tell personal stories.
  7. Conversation starters are can be as simple as asking the 5 W’s Who-What-When-Why-Where
  8. Compliment people with integrity and sincerity. Compliments are also great conversations starters.
  9. Be friendly, encouraging, entertaining.
  10. Look for people who are alone. Go up to meet them.
  11. Talk about the event, the speaker.
  12. Ask for advice. People love to give advice.
  13. Set a goal. Talk with 5 people or 10 or 20. Or, just 1 person.
  14. Organize your own event. Meet up.
  15. Show up early when there are less people present.
  16. Volunteer at the event/meeting. Door greeter, registration desk and food service are all ways to meet people easily and allows you to decide who might be a good fit for you and a later conversation.
  17. Bring your business cards. Make them unique. Maybe a Bookmark, a packet of seeds, a flower or balloon attached to your card. Step out of the box with your business cards.
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  18. Have your 30 second to 90 second elevator speech ready. Make it compelling. Know the problem you solve and the solution. Add something amazing you have accomplished. Practice, Practice, Practice saying it.
  19. Focus on what you can do to help others. Remember the 17 contacts. This is only the first. Build your relationships.
  20. Be prepared. Know who who will be there. What the organization is about. When and Where it is and why you are going. Look up the organizers on LinkedIn and get to know them in advance. Dress professionally.
  21. Follow up. After networking, follow up with everyone you talked with. Write notes on the back of the business cards you receive, so you can remember the person and what you asked about. Give a personal account in the followup email of what ou talked about. Invite them to something. A different networking meeting, blab, Facebook group or coffee.

Make your networking successful and valuable to your business by following these simple 21 steps. There are a lot more tips and tools to networking. Join the Boldly Brilliant Facebook group to learn more. Click this link.

http://facebook.com/groups/BeBoldlyBrilliant 

Last and most important…Be who you are, Be yourself! Follow up!

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About Georgia London

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