Art of Business Networking: Tips to Connect in Real Life Like a Pro
Networking is perhaps the cornerstone of your success in today’s contemporary business world, which is massively fixated around your exposure, company grandeur, personality and connections. Hundreds of networking events take place around us. As a starter in the business world, I was inundated with the notion that you have to be there; in every networking event, no matter how irrelevant it is, you have to make your presence felt. This introduced me to a new thing: Bad Networking. If you are making vital networking mistakes and not connecting like a pro, mind you, networking can backfire and chances are that you’ll be completely demotivated. Here are some of the networking tips you must cling to get the results you want.
Everything must be Relevant
Don’t go in an event where chances are high that you’ll end up standing by a table with a glass of wine and staring at corporate faces. You’ll never learn anything from that. One-on-one meetings, small gatherings, workshops related to your interests can pay back massively instead of these apparently glamorous events. Always go where you like to go. I am not saying that you shouldn’t come out of your comfort zone. It’s just that the networking event for you will be the best if it’s more relevant to your area.
Plan your networking strategy according to your field, budget (yes, networking can be expensive) and interests.
Don’t Stop at Just a LinkedIn Request
Ok, so you attended a networking event, gave your business cards, came back home, sent Facebook, LinkedIn requests to the folks you liked at the event. That’s it? No. You need to show generosity. Now is the time you can materialize the networking event fuss you suffered from. Send small gift if you can, thank them on the useful posts they have shared. Email them and tell how you both can collaborate on further projects. Networking is not just about expanding your social media connections list. It’s about real world business. So if you want to stand out and network, you’ll have to continuously show generosity to the people you think can be useful.
Start from Common Grounds and tell your passions
Networking is all about making business relationships strong by coming out with your human skills. You have to be passionate about what you do. You need to expand your exposure. Majority of times, I made connections in events by talking about general topics which are commonly interesting to people. For that, you must have reading habits; you have to understand people. You cannot just stand in an event and start bragging about your programming skills and about your projects. Start from common grounds.
Set your priorities and be patient
Most of us think that attending a networking event is only necessary if you need a job, clients or projects. This might be true to some extent, but you need to change your approach. Even if you have landed an event with hopes to get a potential client or a job, don’t just throw to people like that. Don’t tell them that you are here for a job. This is not a job fair! Start talking to people. Tell them what you are good at and how you can help companies to grow and make exciting products. Job will follow you.