So, you’re at a networking event. Now what?

By claire |

networking_professionals1We all hear that networking is the key to success in business. Who you know  in a room is often more important than who you are. For that purpose, networking events have become a weekly staple for most businesses. However, many people feel intimidated at the thought of walking into a room full of people they don’t know and starting conversations with them. Preparing yourself for these events will lift the weight from your shoulders and allow you to network with the best of them.
Going in with the right mindset and goals will make your experience easier and more enjoyable.

Being genuine is one thing that people often forget when faced with these situations. They are so worried about making the right impression, that they completely forget who they are and why they are there. Focus on being your best you.  You are there to make connections and to gain clients, so establish yourself as an expert. Your confidence and knowledge about your field will leave a lasting impression.

When meeting people, you want them to want to know you. Articulating what you are looking for and how you can help them gives you the position of control. Even if the person you are engaged in conversation with has no direct need you can fill, they may know someone who does and will likely make that introduction if they understand your value.

Most importantly, don’t burn any bridges. Treating everyone you encounter with the highest regard will reflect well on you and your company.  Follow up with these people quickly after the event to brand yourself in their minds. This will prove to be the most effective in building relationships, contacts and clients.

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