Welcome to Small Business Talk Podcast with Cathy Smith, today will bust the Networking myth!
For a lot of people networking is their worst nightmare, a free feed or a total waste of time.
However, done well networking can be your businesses greatest growth strategy.
Networking Your Worst Nightmare?
Networking you have got it. Or we haven’t.
No! Networking is a skill just like any other and you can learn it, practice it and perfect it. Networking done well can really grow your business.
Oh yuck, going into a room full of strangers and having to talk to them. My worst nightmare.
Yeah, I’m with you. I used to dread having to go to networking events so much so that I actually book my networking events in advance, and then on the day when it comes, I’ve already paid for my ticket and I’m committed to go.
The quickest way to build trust is in person. We take our queues from how people behaviour both verbally and non verbally and first impressions really do count.
1. Don’t Work the Room
Aim to have quality interactions not quantity.
Meet 2 or 3 people per event and reconnect with people you have meet before however you don’t know very well. Don’t be that person who is moving from person to person thrusting their business cards at anyone who will take them.
2. Have a Few Wuestions Prepared in Advance
Ask a question relating to the event or what business they are in. Let them talk so that you can make a connection with them. Actively listen to the person you are with and hear what they are saying rather than just waiting for your turn to speak.
Ask followup questions and be genuinely interested in what the person is saying.
3. Follow Up
If you make a connection with some people and feel you could add value to their business, ask for their business card. After the event write a couple notes to what you spoke about. The next day email, say hi, that you met at the event and mention what you talked about.
Networking done well can be very good for your business because people like to deal with people they know, like… and trust.
It’s one of the quickest ways to create those barriers down. Networking doesn’t have to be scary as you think it’s going to be.
Try these tips, be prepared and have fun.
Remember to be great, you must start.
Take 1 tip from today’s episode and take action.
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