Six tips to make networking at an event easy and enjoyable

Networking is the key to success in business

Networking at an eventI recently attended an event and was inspired by Claire Brummell from Feminine 1st when she spoke about networking. Her presentation reminded me that for some people networking is second nature but for others it’s hard work, tedious and nerve racking. Both parties, however, recognise that networking is the key to success in business. So how can you enjoy it and master it if you’re feeling overwhelmed when attending an event?

1. Look approachable and smile

This is such a simple, basic rule, yet so many people don’t even think to do it. I’m not going to give you a hard time, for if you’re anxious it’s probably the last thing on your mind. However, in order to succeed at networking you need to overcome this and look approachable. No one warms to a scowling, serious face. A smile, on the other hand is incredibly welcoming.

2. Use body language and mirroring

Let’s be honest here, joining a group can be awkward even for the pros. One of the best ways to do this is by quietly approaching the group and standing on the peripherals. I wouldn’t recommend introducing yourself immediately unless asked to. Rather, I would suggest listening attentively and mirroring the group’s body language. What you’ll find is that soon enough the group will open up and invite you in to participate.

3. Use the event facilities as your aid

Coffee and tea areas are a perfect place for striking up conversations, and mundane conversations are usually good to get a dialogue going. Once you’ve struck up a rapport you can then ask more pertinent questions, for example, why are they at the event, what do they hope to get out of it, what do they do etc.?

4. Ask for an introduction

Asking someone else to make an introduction is probably the easiest way to network and I’d thoroughly recommend it. Let someone else do the legwork! Obviously if you’re at a large event then this probably isn’t practical, but for smaller events it is.

5. Ask interesting questions and be interested

Asking interesting questions is one of the fastest ways to build not only your credibility but also rapport. Furthermore, it’s a lot easier than bargaining with an opinion.

Most people love to talk about themselves. If you can get people to discuss their experiences and opinions and listen with genuine interest, giving them your full focus and attention you will build immediate rapport and trust. Be authentic, share your passions and help other people feel good about themselves.

6. Be generous and helpful

It’s incredibly refreshing to have someone offer to make an introduction or connection or share some useful information at an event. Remember, if you do this; follow up, as you’ll be seen as an action taker, dependable and a person of their word.

In the comments below, tell me how you get on with networking and what methods or techniques you use. Let me know what action you’ll take as a result of watching this video and reading this post too. I’d love to hear.

Thank you, as always for reading, watching and contributing here. If you found this useful, please share it with your friends!

With love and gratitude,

 

 

 

 

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JaneFrankland

Jane Frankland is a successful cyber security entrepreneur, consultant and speaker who has had a diverse career encompassing art and design; business development; and operations. Having held directorships and senior executive positions within her own companies and at several large PLCs, she now provides agile, forward thinking organisations with strategic business development solutions. Right now she is writing a book on gender diversity in cyber security and is focused on increasing the numbers of women in the profession.

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5 Comments

  • Dee Glapion says:

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  • Farida Messaadi says:

    Hello Jane,

    I thank Beryl Thomas @WiredForSuccess for introducing me to your FB page and subsequently to your blogs !

    Your professional style & insights are totally refreshing – a thoroughly entertaining blog about making networking enjoyable. Spot on ! I look forward to reading your future blogs & sharing them too.

    All the very best,
    Farida

    • jane says:

      Hi Farida, it’s great to hear from you & I really must thank Beryl for introducing us. I’m really glad you like my style & have found it entertaining & enjoyable. Let me know if there’s anything you’d like me to blog about & please just ask a question if anything’s a challenge. I’ll get straight on to it & have an answer for you. We’ll connect on Facebook too. Looking forward to developing our relationship. 🙂

      • Farida Messaadi says:

        Hi Jane,

        Thank you so much for taking the time to respond. I’ve been sharing your contact details and infectious enthusiasm with my many of my business network. Spreading the news about your blogs, videos and talent 🙂

        Looking forward to seeing your interview on WiredForSuccess ! Beryl & Mel are just FA-BU-LOUS . We’re staying tuned !

        Bye for now,
        Farida

        • jane says:

          Farida,

          Thanks you so much for this kind comment & for letting people know about my site. That’s so cool! I’m really excited about that interview with WiredforSuccess. I’m so impressed with Beryl & Melanie! Let me know if there’s anything you’d like me to blog/video about too! Just drop me a message as a question. 🙂 Speak soon 🙂

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