In business networking is vital and should always be a priority.
Many organizations are looking for candidates with excellent networking skills because of the advantages that making connections can provide, Clare Mulligan Consulting explained. It is important to be able to network in order to expand your business. In addition you should be training your own employees so that they can more easily rub elbows with the individuals that can assist them, as well as you.
Of course, some people may feel anxious about the prospect of networking with others in the business world, but there are ways to ensure that you come across as someone to know. To learn how to make the most out of your networking, read the advice below:
1. Make a good first impression
Make sure that you are prepared before any event or meeting where the possibility to make important connections exist, Clare Mulligan Consulting noted. Every time you're heading somewhere to networking make sure you have conversation topics and business cards on-hand and ready for use. Don't stick to the same pitch either, switch the language or focus depending on the type of event you are attending.
Inc. suggested always being the first person to offer up a handshake and say hello. Not only will the individual on the other side of the exchange be impressed, but so will everyone around you. It isn't just the person you're speaking with that will take note of how you interact. This will indicate poise and make you seem more accessible to individuals around you.
2. Don't just talk, be helpful
Part of being prepared with talking points before a networking event is making sure that you understand the businesses that will be represented there and how you can assist, according to Clare Mulligan Consulting. Make sure you know exactly why every individual is there to the fullest extent possible.
When you're there, identify people and businesses and how you can help them, and then explain this to them. If you're in the business banking industry, exchange financial tips. This will both ease the other individual's nerves and likely lead them to look for a way to pay back the favor offered. Following the conversation, make sure you take notes on the discussion. Often people will make offers to help, and then never follow through. Don't let yourself become one of those people.
3. You're working, but don't act like it
Once you've begun speaking with someone, don't let yourself get too caught up in the professional nature of the conversation, Forbes contributor Newtek suggested. Let the discussion go where it will and don't let yourself get distracted by trying to interject too much business lingo. Make sure you get across your points, but let the back-and-forth flow naturally. As long as you have a thorough knowledge of your business and the industry that each of you operate in, letting the conversation move organically should be a simple enough task.
4. Get a business card, and don't lose it
In every interaction, make sure you receive a business card early, Inc. recommended. The best method is to make sure that you hand over your own business card quickly. By attaining someone's contact information, you can ensure that the conversation continues later on, possibly resulting in a fruitful business relationship.
Forbes offers a counterintuitive next step – get rid of the card. Business cards are easy to lose, so the first chance you get enter the individual's contact information into your mobile device or computer, so you don't take the risk of losing touch with a potentially helpful individual.
Networking is an indispensable talent, use these tips to ensure you perfect it.