Key Networking Habits that You Need to Develop!
Business Blogging 09/03/2013
We all know how important it is in the business environment to build contacts. What a better place to do so than at a conference, networking event, or just an entrepreneur meetup. There are many business social event websites that allow people to see who will be attending the events, their professional backgrounds, business interests, social media profiles, and even -contact information. The internet has provided us with such a high level of accessibility and connectivity that it would be a shame if we don’t take advantage of it and grow our connections faster and stronger. Tellwut conducted an online survey to find out if business people have good networking habits and if they take advantage of all of the perks that networking websites offer, as well as learning more about their networking behavior and observations when attending networking events. 78 North American professionals participated in the survey. When asked the following questions, this is what they said: The results so far show that the majority have a good start when it comes to networking. It is essential to try to learn more about the people you will be surrounded with, including the industries they are in, positions, and even influence. Getting to know attendees through their social media profiles and even connecting with them will allow you to be more prepared when it comes time for a conversation. You will know what they are up to currently; you will know more about their professional backgrounds; and you will be able to go to the right people when it's time for the networking event. As mentioned above, social media can be a big information haven from which you can find good insights and be more prepared. However, part of the pre-networking research is to find out how you can help other attendees. Adding value to the conversation can be a powerful networking practice to use. Any type of assistance from your side will open up others to start a relationship with you, which on the other hand is what networking events are all about. You don't go there just to exchange business cards but to build relationships. Another helpful tip for you is to try to connect with the event organizer. That is the person in charge of connecting business professionals. He/She might be able to introduce you to people you have wanted to talk to and/or give you good tips and insights to help you down the road. As we all know business cards are an important part of a networking experience and all event organizers advise attendees to stack up with business cards. However, it is important to make sure you end up having more cards in your hands than more of your own cards in someone else's hands. This ensures that you will be in control of the situation and will be able to contact all of these people, instead of expecting them to contact you. However, don't focus on just that.. focus on your conversations of course. Yes, this is a networking event but the conversations does not need to be strictly business related. People are more likely to relate to someone not just because of their professional experience and business, but because they get to know you as a person as well. That doesn't mean that you will share very personal topics, but it doesn't mean that you cannot talk about sports, entertainment, and the DYI meetup you love attending. Your appearance can say a lot about you, your personality, even your profession and it is an important part of the interaction (believe it or not). The old saying "dress to impress" definitely takes into action at networking events. Make sure that you are groomed and well presented. And remember: you represent not only yourself but your business as well. Staying in touch, I would say, is one of the most important parts of networking. Therefore, make sure that you contact the people you have had conversations with through an email (but not limited to email). Remind them who you are, note something you have spoken about and again provide value to them by attaching a contact you have promised or an article you have read that may help them with the current issues you have previously discussed. As we all know LinkedIn is the online place to be to keep in touch and build more connections. Therefore, the exchange of business cards will definitely come in place when you want to find other attendees on LinkedIn (if you have not done so prior the event) and of course, connect with them. What approaches and techniques have you found to be successful in networking? Share them with us! To join our business e-newsletter list and get new business ideas, special discounts, consumer insights, and much more, click here. Happy Surveying!