Edition 3: Networking With People
Networking can be terrifying to comprehend for a lot of people. Imagine being in a room full of strangers where you have to make an impression. Putting yourself out there can be a very uncomfortable feeling. But networking isn’t about putting yourself out there, it’s about being comfortable with who you are as a person and what you represent. Here are 5 things you can do to become better and more comfortable with connecting with others so next time you network you can be prepared to connect with the right people.
1. Be confident in your character
There is power in being unique and that is exactly who you are “unique”. The more comfortable you become in being yourself, the easier it will be to be yourself in front of other people. It can be a very natural feeling to want to blend in to the crowd to fell more accepted. But in the case of networking, people want to get to know you first before they want to listen to how you might be able to help them.
2. Conversation starters
Invent a list of conversation starters that will get people talking. Things like “how was your day” or “what has the weather been like in your area”, these are generic starts to help get people speaking and find a common subject to talk about. Avoid deep and meaningful conversations when networking, these can be saved for a different time. Examples of this are, “What is your passion and why did you pursue your career. These are questions that people find very personal so asking them straight away can put people off guard.
3. Know who you want to connect with
Before or arriving at a network event have in mind who you want to talk with. This will help you be more intent about your conversations and your time. Networking isn’t about the quantity of people you meet but the quality of the connections you make with others.
4. Remember people’s names
The number one thing to always remember about networking is remembering peoples names. People hold a lot of value in their name, it’s a part of their identity as a person. A good trick to mention their name in conversation eight times. Saying it out loud helps your brain remember it. If you meet them again and remember their name, they will be impressed by you.
5. Practice your elevator pitch
What do you do, why do you do it and how it it different from everyone else. If you can answer these three questions in a minute, this is the grounds for your elevator pitch. Time is important when networking so the more precise and timely you are with describing yourself and service makes it more efficient for others to understand.
At the end of the day practice makes perfect so don’t be afraid to start a conversation with those around you. Networking can also be reophraised as making a genuine connection with people around you. The best network connection are the ones that become good friendship. You attract who you are and want you want so be yourself and be precise about what you want to achieve.