Have you ever gone into a networking event hoping to leave with a lot of valuable new contacts, only to go home with just more anxieties?
We understand. Not everyone is great at socialising, but it’s a skill that can be trained and improved over time. We have four tips to help you find and create the right connection during business networking events.
Follow these tips below and make real connections that can go more than a handshake.
1. Have a goal
Before attending a networking event, ask yourself the real purpose why you want to join. Being clear with what you want to achieve will help you keep an eye on your goal.
Is it to simply meet new people? Learn new strategies? Meet like-minded business entrepreneurs? Or are you actively looking for potential business partners?
Whatever your objective for the social gathering is, it’s important to be specific about it and to focus on realising it.
2. Do your research
If your event shows the name of all the people attending, take this opportunity to learn more about them. There’s nothing creepy about this method. It’s only one way of staying true to your goals.
Through conducting simple research about the attendees, you’ll learn their background and specialties. It can help you determine who among them can help you achieve your business goals. Learning about them can help you create conversation starters or identify mutual connections. It can also help give you the confidence to initiate and create connections.
Note, however, that it doesn’t mean you have to close your circle to your selected people. Networking events are about diverse people with similar interests. While research is one way to get ahead of the networking game, know that every people you’ll meet have beautiful stories and lessons to share.
3. Ask and learn to listen
Now that the event day has finally come, here are tips you should follow: ask questions and listen to their answers. Part of getting to know people is introducing one’s self, but the cycle shouldn’t begin and end there. You should learn how to get to know people through listening to their stories too.
Ask people about their company—the challenges they faced, how they started, their goals, and more. You can also ask them about their interests and any topic you’d think would warm up the conversation.
Do not be afraid to ask the tough questions. Doing so will help you learn and would bring an opportunity to mention how you can help them. It’s a more effective strategy than simply introducing yourself, what your company can do, and asking them what they can do for you. Moreover, the method will create deeper connections than a small talk can give.
4. Reach out
The end of the event doesn’t mean the networking game is over. It’s also an opportunity to establish a real connection. For example, after the event, approach someone and ask them what they thought of the event. Ask their opinion and share yours too. That’s the real start of your successful networking.
Social anxiety is real, and it can happen to anyone, but preparation is always a useful tool to help you succeed effectively. Follow our tips above, and don’t let the anxiety paralyse you or make you lose the opportunity. Be confident and most importantly, enjoy the event.
If you’re ready to experience the power of referral to your business, NRG Networking is here for you.
We’re a group of like-minded business professionals conducting exclusive training sessions and business networking events in Perth. Contact us today to know more!