We’ve all been there.…
Do you dread the idea of walking into a room packed full of strangers, shaking hands with sweaty palms, worried about coming off ‘too strong’ or not strong enough? I feel your pain, as someone who literally has to mentally prep for networking sometimes. Just trying to read name tags can be tough, let alone come up with handy little mnemonic tricks to remember everyone’s name and occupation.
Even the word itself sounds a little harsh when said out loud. But, even so, as business owners, we find that networking is one of the best ways for us to spread the word about what we do and why we do it. We want the world to know that what we do means something – not only to us but also, to those we serve: our customers.
So, on we go, practicing our elevator pitches, our annunciation and the practice of happily making eye contact. We straighten our posture and enter the headspace that we came to conquer (or survive, depending on my mood that day).
By the time I leave, I will be the master at this networking thingamajig.
And doesn’t it seem like that no matter how many times we engage in networking – whether it’s in our home towns, at trade shows or conferences – the next time we need to do it, we’re back at square one in terms of feeling comfortable doing it?
Not for long! Over the years of networking myself and my business, I have compiled a nice list of “how-to’s” on networking. I go over this and other topics in my latest course from LivingUber – it’s out June 1st! For more information on this short cut to entrepreneurial mastery, register your email for my newsletter at the bottom of this article.
Below are three, fail-proof tricks that I use when I am getting ready to sell myself (and my business) to other people at networking events. To download the free, single page PDF version of this list as well as a BONUS tip, click here!
Take a moment to collect yourself and take a few breaths before you launch into your speech. Is your elevator pitch clear? If you were on the receiving end of meeting you, would it make sense? Is it unique to you? People respond really well when you speak confidently about what you know – and who knows your business better than you?
- Breathe – Take a moment to collect yourself and take a few breaths before you launch into your speech. Is your elevator pitch clear? If you were on the receiving end of meeting you, would it make sense? Is it unique to you? People respond really well when you speak confidently about what you know – and who knows your business better than you?
- Relax and enjoy it – We tend to stress ourselves out over first impressions and coming off as perfect. If we practice being in the moment and really enjoying getting to know other professionals and entrepreneurs in our field, we may come to find that networking is actually a fun experience. I know, I know, fun isn’t what we are used to when describing a networking event…But, meeting new people will always have benefits…Which brings me to my last point…
- Think long-term – When we think about the long-term benefits of meeting new people and connecting to other entrepreneurs or professionals, the pay-off can be so rewarding! Sure, you may not want to go now because it makes you nervous or you feel unprepared. But, maybe going to that event will connect you with a future investor? Or open the doors to meeting even more of your ideal clients? You have the opportunity to meet so many inspiring people, you are bound to not regret it!
With these three tips, I just know that you’ll be successful at owning your next networking event. Again, click here to download the free PDF file now to get your extra bonus tip!
What are some ways that you’ve accomplished networking successfully? Come join the discussion on LinkedIn!