How to Network? 8 Business Networking Tips -

by Opendoorz Business Networking

 

Networking is an essential skill for most business people, but especially for entrepreneurs. Most people think business networking is easy and for some, it is but even for those to whom it comes naturally there are a few business networking tips and ‘tricks’ that even they remember on a daily basis.  Here are my 8 tips to help build your confidence and make sure you and your business get the best from networking events, meetings or your networking group.

 

1. Determine your Goals

When you are attending an event or group, enter the room knowing how many people you intend to meet that day.  Connect and swap cards. Don’t attend if you really don’t feel like connecting, it will show.

2. Take your ‘tools’ in with you

Every business has its own set of tools and in business networking those tools are your name badge, your business card, pen and paper, any promotional literature or online info about your business and most importantly, a few handy referrals you could pass on.  Depending on the nature of the event you can also take in a ‘prop’ to encourage recall of you later eg:  the accounts lady with the green umbrella.

3. Give referrals

The impact of passing on a referral unbidden is far reaching.  Successful networking is done on the basis that you get out what you put in and a genuine introducation with no catch is worth a lot to any business person these days.  It also helps them remember you!

4. Collect cards

It’s easy to give out your cards and we all feel compelled to do just that but remember why you’re there and ask your contact to give you two of their business cards.  One is for you and the other one is for a contact you’d like to refer them to.  Tell the person you’re speaking to that and watch them glow!

5. Limit your time

The aim of a business networking meeting is to meet new contacts that could impact your business.  Allocate time wisely and stick to your parameters.  Try not to get bogged down by more social friends that may be at the same meeting.  Ten minutes is usually enough time to swop stories and collect contact details for future use.

6. Ensure you follow up

You’ll have made a big impression in the networking meeting/event and it’s important to continue that with good follow up. Try to contact your new business friends within a 48 hour period just to say hello and how much you enjoyed meeting them.

7. Write notes

Don’t walk in with an obtrusive note book but jot down a few key words on the back of your new contacts business card to remind you of them. It’s hard to remember the little things about someone when you’re on a time limit.

8. Introduce people to each other

If you meet two people at the event who you know would benefit from meeting, introduce them.  Sharing is the new caring these days!

Happy Networking… let me know how you are getting on!

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